Manamadurai Pottery

Manamadurai, a small village in the Sivagangai district of Tamil Nadu, is known for its pottery making. The tradition has been passed down from generation to generation, and today, Manamadurai pottery is recognized worldwide for its unique style and craftsmanship.

Main Raw Material: Mud

The main raw material used for making Manamadurai pottery is mud. The clay used for the pottery is enriched by the Vaigai river, which runs through the village. The Vaigai river contributes to the quality of the clay used in the pottery, making it ideal for the process.

The Five Elements of Nature

The making of Manamadurai pottery involves the use of the five elements of nature, namely, earth, water, fire, air, and space. These elements are believed to give the pots a unique quality that cannot be replicated by modern machinery. The process begins with mud, which represents the earth, mixed with water, another element of nature. The mixture is then baked in fire, marking the third element. The fourth element is the air that passes through the pores in the clay. Finally, the cavity enclosed by the pot represents space, one of the five elements.

Adding Sand for Quality

To improve the quality of the pottery, sand is added to the clay mixture. The sand is collected from different places in the district and dried for two days. The particles of mud get separated by sieving, and the slurry is mixed with sand. Lead, graphite, calcium lime, ash, red lead, sodium silicate, manganese, iron, and plasticizing are added to the mixture to make the pottery strong.

Proportion is Key

Pot making requires expertise, and one of the most critical factors is proportion. The bottom of the pot has to be perfectly round, and the circumference of the pot and the neck should be proportionate. This ensures that the pot sits flat on the ground and maintains its balance.

Geographical Indication (GI)

Manamadurai pottery recently earned a Geographical Indication (GI) tag, which recognizes it as a unique product of the region. The GI tag ensures that the pottery is protected from imitation and guarantees its authenticity.



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