Lao Pottery Ware.
Scattered at intervals all over the country may be seen these brick-fields and pottery-works, where the domestic water-jars and other vessels and the curious native ovens are made. The ware is of a very porous and brittle description, and the natives have not yet learnt the art of glazing it. The ordinary kitchen utensils are of very inferior make, but more attention is paid to the manufacture of the decanters or water-bottles, by which the natives set great store. These
Laosians steaming rice.
vary in shape from that of an ordinary wine decanter or carafe to that of a really well-designed and artistically-worked goblet or tureen. The larger and better kinds are furnished with a silver or gold cup, which is kept inverted over the mouth of the decanter. The best water-vessels, however, are of Ngiou make. These are either of a black or slate colour, and bear a polish. The earthenware ovens are strange little affairs, somewhat in the shape of a boot. In the opening at the