Shipwrecked: Tang Treasures from the Java Sea, edited by Regina Krahl, John Guy, J. Keith Wilson and Julian Raby
Hardcover: 328 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books (3 Aug 2011)
Part adventure story, part maritime archaeological expedition, part historical look into ninth-century Chinese economy, culture, and trade, Shipwrecked is a fascinating journey back in time. Twelve centuries ago, a merchant shipan Arab dhowfoundered on a reef just off the coast of Belitung, a small island in the Java Sea. The cargo was a remarkable assemblage of lead ingots, bronze mirrors, spice-filled jars, intricately worked vessels of silver and gold, and more than 60,000 glazed bowls, ewers, and other ceramics. The ship remained buried at sea for more than a millennium, its contents protected from erosion by their packing and the conditions of the silty sea floor. Shipwrecked explores this precious cargo and the story of the men who sailed it, with more than 250 gorgeous photographs and essays by international experts in Arab ship-building methods, pan-Asian maritime trade, ceramics, precious metalwork, and more.
About the Author
John Guy, Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, has extensively researched all early shipwrecks discovered in insular Southeast Asia. He lives in New York City. Regina Krahl, an expert in the Chinese production of high-quality ceramics and their export markets, has published widely in the field.