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Nippon porcelain refers to vases, teapots, wall plaques, humidors, and other ceramic objects stamped with the word Nippon on their bases. The practice began in 1891 in response to the U.S. McKinley Tariff Act, which forbade the import of items that weren’t “plainly marked, stamped, branded, or labeled in legible English words.” Nippon is an English word approximating a pronunciation of the Japanese word for Japan, but in 1921, the word was ruled Japanese in origin, so Nippon was no longer accepted by U.S. Customs Agents. From then on, imported Japanese china was stamped Japan. 

What porcelain collectors today call "Nippon," therefore, is hand-painted Japanese porcelain from the period 1891 to 1921. Today, Nippon-marked porcelain tends to have a higher value than pieces marked Japan.

A unique application was moriage, in which clay was applied to a piece like icing on a cake, before being glazed or gilded.

Porcelain is translucent indicating genuine Nippon.

Mark: "NIPPON HAND PAINTED", Blue pagoda.  The use of NIPPON was generally discontinued after 1921. 

Dragonware is a form of moriage pottery made since the late 19th century. Moriage is a type of decoration on Japanese pottery. Raised white designs are applied to the ware. White dragons are the major raised decorations on the moriage called dragonware. 

This original Nippon dragonware has very ornate dragons that wrap around the entire piece. 
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