As the largest production area among the Six Ancient Kilns, this city flourished as the major site for these kilns due to its development of distribution using sea routes. Located on the west coast of the Chita Peninsula facing Ise Bay, it has influenced the pottery of other production areas such as Tanba and Shigaraki. It is said that the source of Tokoname's high-quality clay was Lake Tokai, which existed from about 650,000 to 1,000,000 years ago. At its largest, the lake stretched from the southern part of Gifu Prefecture to Owari and the Suzuka region, and the sediments accumulated at the bottom of the lake produced high-quality clay. In the Chita Peninsula, the use of this clay for making teabowls and jars began in the late Heian period, leading to the construction of many anagama (hole kilns). Entering the Kamakura period, the production of large pots and jars over 50cm in size began. These mass-produced pots and jars were then transported by sea and supplied throughout Japan, including the Tohoku and Kyushu regions. In the late Edo period, continuous chamber climbing kilns (renboushiki noborigama) were adopted, producing items such as clay pipes, jars, and cinnabar-glazed tea utensils (around 1854). In modern times, with the introduction of Western technology, mechanization advanced, and the production of brick tiles and sanitary ceramics began. In the Meiji period, the export industry's star products were ceramics, with decorative pots sparking a Japonism boom overseas. Meanwhile, in Tokoname, Western technologies such as plaster molds and coal kilns were actively introduced. After the war, ornaments and Western-style tableware utilizing these technologies supported Japan's recovery.
Like Seto, Tokoname belongs to the lineage of Sanage Kilns and is characterized by "yakishime," pottery made without the use of glaze. Originally produced for aristocrats and temples, including ritual vessels and daily necessities, the demand from locals also led to the production of everyday items like jars and pots. Additionally, the strata deposited by Lake Tokai are rich in iron, possessing the property of vitrifying at lower temperatures, making it suitable for creating large ceramics. In the late Heian period, a jar-making technique known as "Yoriko-zukuri" was developed. This involved carrying clay ropes, similar to rods of 7 to 10 cm in thickness, on the shoulders and stacking the clay while the potter himself spun around like a potter's wheel. This technique has been handed down through generations and is still practiced today.