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Very hard, opaque, water-resistant pottery made of non-porous clay with feldspar and a high silica content, fired to the point of vitrification (1,200-1,280º C) Glazing decorates and gives it a smooth finish; it usually fires to shades of gray or buff, though some red stonewares do exist. The earliest examples are Chinese, from the 10th to 3rd centuries BC. From the 9th century AD stoneware was made in N Europe; in Britain from the late 17th century.