After the fall of the Ming dynasty in 1644, the porcelain industry in China went into decline. Merchants such as the Dutch East India Company could no longer export large quantities of Chinese porcelain to Europe, and so turned to the Japanese potters of Arita for the export wares that they required. The palette that emerged from this period is characterised by underglaze cobalt blue, overglaze iron red and gilding, known today as ‘Imari’ style. The term originates from the name of the port in West Japan from where these wares and others goods were shipped to Europe during the 17th and 18th centuries. After the Chinese porcelain trade reopened for large-scale export, they copied the Japanese iron red designs. The shape of this lobed teapot and the lotus and vine decoration are typical features of Chinese Imari- style export ware.