Sold Ceramics - Sold Red & Gold / Rouge-de-Fer 1690-1730 - Flowers, Animals and Long Elizas - Page 1
Height 30 mm (1.18 inch), diameter of rim 220 mm (8.66 inch), diameter of footring 121 mm (4.76 inch)
Dish on a footring, the spreading sides modelled with pomegranate-shaped panels in low relief, scalloped rim and a glazed base. Decorated in 'Red & Gold' / 'Rouge-de-fer' with iron-red, black enamel and gold on the glaze with two ladies in a garden landscape near a fence with flowering plants, trees, the sun and pierced rockwork. On the sides large panels filled with flowering plants in-between these panels single flowering plants. Around the rim a trellis pattern border with half flower heads. On the reverse two flower sprays.
Romance of the Western Chamber
The love story' Romance of the Western Chamber' (Xixiang ji) ranks among the most famous literary works of China. Its importance for young people can be compared to that of Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' in the West. 'Romance of the Western Chamber' was written by Wang Shifu (1260-1336). There already existed a short story in the Tang dynasty titled 'Biography of Yingying' (Yingying Zhuan) by Yuan Zhen (779-831), but Wang Shifu adapted it by adding details and giving it a happy rather than a sad ending. It tells the story of a forbidden love affair between the civil servant Zhang Sheng, who is gifted, but of a poor family background, and the pretty Cui Yingying, daughter of the Prime Minister. The two young people have their first encounter in a Buddhist temple, where Yingying and her mother have taken lodgings when accompanying the coffin of the recently deceased father back home. Suddenly, the temple is besieged by a local gang of outlaws, who demand the daughter to be handed over. Yingying's mother promises her daughter's hand in marriage to whoever saves the daughter from falling into the hands of the gang leader. However, when Zhang succeeds in doing so with the help of General Du, his childhood friend, she does not keep her promise. The young couple start a secret affair, supported by Hongniang ('Lady in Red'), Yingying's maid. When Yingying's mother discovers the affair, she consents to the marriage on the condition that Zhang passes the final examination for the highest position in the civil service of the capital, Zhang does so well, that he is granted a top position. (Suebsman 2019, p.43)
On this dish we see the two characters Yingying and Hongniang admiring flowers in the gardens of Pujiu Monastery. The student Zhang is about to see Yingying for the first time and fall in love with her. There also is an underglaze blue version of this motif. (Düsseldorf 2015, cat. 123.1 & Suebsman 2019, p.44)
For identically decorated dishes, please see:
- Jan Menze van Diepen Stichting. Selectie uit de collectie Oosterse keramiek. (Jan Menze van Diepen Foundation. A Selection from the Collection of Oriental Ceramics), (C.J.A. Jörg, Slochteren, 2002), p.118, cat. 80.
- Porzellanschätze der Kangxi-Zeit / Porcelain Treasures of the Kangxi Period, (Exhibition catalogue, Deutsch-Chinesische Verlagsanstalt, Düsseldorf / Beijing 2015), p.216, cat 123.1.
- The ceramic collection of the Musée de la Compagnie des Indes de Lorient, Fort de l'Aigle, Port-Louis, inv.nr. ML400 C250.
For an (almost) identically in underglaze blue decorated version of this dish, please see:
For similarly decorated dishes, please see:
- Chinese export porcelain. Chine de Commande, (D.F. Lunsingh Scheurleer, London, 1974), English translation of the Dutch edition, Hilversum 1966, cat. 318 & 319.
- De Chinese Porseleinkast, (D.F. Lunsingh Scheurleer in Mededelingenblad Nederlandse Vereniging van Vrienden van de Ceramiek, vol. 52, 1968), pp. 32-33, cat. 114.
- Oosterse keramiek uit Groninger kollekties, exhibition catalogue Groninger Museum, (C.J.A. Jörg, Martinipers/Wolters-Noordhoff, Groningen 1982), p.56, cat. 78.
- Chine de Commande, (D.F. Lunsingh Scheurleer, Lochem 1989), p.126, cat. 105.
- "Porseleinzaal van Age Looxma Ypeij in ere hersteld", D. Pohle in: Keramika, Jaargang 18, Nummer 4, Winter 2006, p.16, cat. 2.
Condition: A few glaze rough spots a fleabite and a frit to the rim. Some shallow frits and chips to the footring.