This baluster-shaped Jun-ware vase is covered with colourful sang-de-boeuf glaze. The true ash glaze is thick, opalescent and flocculent over the light grey stoneware body. Jun-ware factories continued to produce the ware through the Song and Yuan dynasties and as late as the 16th century. Consequently there is much difficulty in distinguishing the Song and later Jun-wares. The tendency is to call the finer specimens Song and the coarser Yuan or Ming. The great fascination of Jun-ware lies in its glaze and Jun glazes have long been among the most admired and least understood of Chinese high-fired effects. The most typical colour of Jun-wares, namely the purple-red was a mixture of copper-red, iron-blue and opalescence. This was achieved by painting the copper pigment on top of the raw Jun glaze, before the wares were given a high-temperature firing. Collectors cherish Jun-wares and sayings have it that “Gold has its price, but Jun-wares are beyond price” and “if you don’t own a Jun-ware, you don’t count as rich”. Yet the Chinese disliked Jun-wares because they were considered too gaudy and often referred to them as “donkey’s liver and horse’s lungs” in derision.