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2012086
2012086

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Object 2012086

 

Teapot

 

China

 

1730-1735

 

Height (with cover) 118 mm (4.65 inch), height (without cover) 83 mm (3.27 inch), diameter handle to spout 169 mm (6.65 inch), diameter of mouthrim 55 mm (2.17 inch), diameter of footring 52 mm (2.05 inch), weight with cover 356 grams (12.56 ounce (oz.)), weight cover 84 grams (2.96 ounce (oz.))

 

Globular teapot on footring, curved handle with a straight spout, domed and pierced cover with knob. Polychrome decorated in iron-red, gold, black and other overglaze enamels with a continuous river scene with a fisherman's boat, trees near a rocky bank, pagodas, pavilions a watchtower and a bridge with two figures, one walking the other on horseback. Round the rim a foliate and floral scroll border. The cover is decorated en suite.

 

The decoration shows a river scene with pagodas and pavilions which to contemplate the surrounding nature far from civilisation, a common theme on porcelain, especially from the mid-17th century onwards. The theme appears on ordinary as well as on expensive, high-class, and will certainly have been appreciated by Chinese scholars, who cherished a tradition of going back to nature and a simple life, leaving behind the stress of office or court for a time. Europeans, too, will have enjoyed such decorations as they gave an idealised impression of the Chinese countryside, thus confirming their romantic ideas about the Middle Kingdom. (Jörg & Van Campen 1997, p. 219)

 

For an identically decorated teapot and cover, please see:

Condition:

Teapot: A popped bubble of glaze with a tiny firing tension hairline to the handle, a chip, two frits and glaze rough spots to the tip of the spout.

Cover: A glaze rough spot to the knob and a chip with a hairline to the rim.

 

References:

Jörg & Van Campen 1997, p. 219

New York 2008, lot 307

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2012283
2012283

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2012283

 

Dish

 

China

 

1730-1735

 

Height 27 mm (1.06 inch), diameter of rim 223 mm (8.78 inch), diameter of footring 112 mm (4.41 inch), weight 298 grams (10.51 ounce (oz.))

 

Dish on footring, flat underglaze brown-edged rim (jia mangkou). Decorated in various enamels, such as blue, iron-red, pink, turquoise and yellow in the centre with a two-handled flowerpot standing on a low tablle, filled with a pomegranate, finger lemon or Buddha’s Hand citron and a peach. On the sides four flowering irises. On the rim four groups of flowers and objects: a pomegranate peel and a lotus flower bound together with a calligraphy brush and a halberd, alternating with a lotus flower with a bowl of dried seeds on top bound together with a chrysanthemum flower and a ruyi sceptre. On the reverse two flowering peony sprays.

 

In the flowerpot three fruits are visible which all play a distinctive role in Chinese symbolism as well as daily life; the pomegranate, finger lemon and peach.

 

The pomegranate (punica granatum), here to the left, is not indigenous to China. It was introduced in the Han dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) from Afghanistan. As a flowering shrub, with its handsome single and double blossoms, ranging in colour from white through pale pink to dark red, it is much cultivated in China. 

 

Pomegranate2

 

Pomegranate blossom, fruit and seeds, illustration by Otto Wilhelm Thomé (1840-1925), Flora von Deutschland, Österreich und der Schweiz in Wort und Bild für Schule und Haus (Flora of Germany, Austria and Switzerland in Word and Picture for School and Home), Germany 1885

 

The flowers are used with iron to make a hair-dye, the root is given as a tonic, and the dried pericarp or peel (as shown on the rim of this dish) is regarded as an astringent and anti-rheumatic remedy and also prescribed in the treatment of dysentery and diseases of the eye.

 

In Chinese, the pomegranate is called shi liu (石榴). Shi liu sounds the same as ‘sixteen’ and because of that the pomegranate is associated with commemorating a sixteenth birthday. In symbolism, a pomegranate may also represent a wish for a title to be continued into the next generation as shì means ‘generation; noble’.

The half-opened fruit reveals numerous seeds in auspicious red. The word seeds, zi, is in Chinese homophonous to zi meaning children or sons. Thus, the pomegranate became a well-established emblem of fertility and abundant male offspring. A picture of children with a ripe, half-open pomegranate is a very popular wedding present. It will bear the inscription liú kāi bǎi zi, (ǐ榴开百子), ‘the pomegranate brings forth a hundred seeds/sons.’

The pomegranate blossoms in the 5th Chinese lunar month, in the summer. Together with the orchid, iris and wild apple it is one of the blossoms of the four seasons.

 

The fingered lemon (var. citrus sarcodactylis) or Buddha’s Hand (foshou;佛手柑) is an inedible bright yellow citron with long segments that grow out of its stem, which resembles the hand position of the Buddha in meditation (dhyana mudra).

A lone citron is often regarded as representing ‘happiness’ and ‘longevity’. This is because the similarity in sound of ‘Fo’ (Buddha) and ‘Fu’ (happiness) and ‘shou’ which depending on the pronunciation can mean both hand and longevity. Buddha's hand fruit is very fragrant and is used predominantly in China, Malaysia and Japan for perfuming rooms and personal items such as clothing.

  

 Vingercitroen

  

A. Poiteau: 'Limone digitata (multiforme)' (Citrus medica sarcodactylis), aquarel op perkament (watercolour on parchment), 1808

 

The peach (xiantao; 仙桃) tree or fruit in China is heavily overlaid with symbolism. Its wood and its colour kept demons at bay, its petals could cast spells on men and the peaches of immortality ripened only once in a thousand years. The peach is first of all a strong symbol of longevity; it is the symbol of the God of Longevity, Shoulao. It is also an emblem of marriage and springtime, because the peach tree blossoms in February, the time of the traditional Chinese New Year, an auspicious time to get married. Peach blossom is a standard decoration for the New Year. Like the pomegranate, it has many medicinal uses. For example, the fruit is said to be efficacious in lung diseases, the flowers are used as a laxative, the bark is given in jaundice or hydrophobia and the sap is a sedative.

 

PeachThome 

  

Peach flower, fruit, seed and leaves, illustration by Otto Wilhelm Thomé (1840-1925), Germany 1885.

 

These three auspicious fruits combined are known as the Three Abundances or Three Plenties (sanduo; 三多). The pomegranate represents progeny, the peach longevity and the Buddha’s Hand happiness or spiritual blessings, in short, a wish for a long life, an abundance of sons and riches.

 

On the rim, we see four clusters of flowers and objects. One of the objects is a halberd (Ji;戟), a long-handled axe or pole axe, with one or two crescent-like blades on the side. 

 

thumbnail_Halberd

 

The Chinese Halberd or Ji (戟)

 

It shares a homophone with a number of auspicious meanings, such as ji meaning ‘good fortune, lucky, auspicious’ and also ‘steps’ as in ‘grades’; three halberds in a vase is a well-known motif for expressing the desire for three official promotions, which can be found frequently on textiles and porcelain. 

Combined with a ruyi scepter or wish-granting wand the interpretation can be ‘May your luck and fortune be as you desire.’ 

 

The lotus (lian hua; 蓮花) also occurs prominently on the rim. It bears its flowers and seedpods simultaneously and is therefore a well-known symbol of fertility and prosperity. Liánzi (蓮子), its (dried) seed (here in bowls on top of the lotus) can mean either lotus seeds or is a pun for a full wallet or continuous sons. The lotus is the flower of the sixth month, the flower of summer. Like the pomegranate, the entire plant is also used medicinally, it is for example prescribed for both alcohol and mushroom poisoning. 

 

The combination of pomegranate and lotus means ‘May you continuously give birth to sons.’ Shown together, they sent a prominent message of numerous progeny. The occurrence of both lotus and a ruyi sceptre or wish-granting wand carries the wish that ‘all your desires will come true year after year,’ the brush, bi, combined with a ruyi means the same. The presence of a chrysanthemum, familiar symbol of longevity, and the calligraphy brush of the scholar, bi, which is also a homophone for bi meaning ‘certainly’ or ‘surely’, seem to emphasize and enhance all these wishes even more. 

 

Condition: A firing flaw, some frits and a chip to the inner footing, a fleabite and a short glaze hairline (only visible at the front) to the rim 

 

References: 

Williams 1976, p.51, pp.315-317, pp.332-333 & p.409 

Eberhard 1986, p.50, pp.104-105, pp 240-241 & pp. 227-228

Bartholomew 2006, cat. 2.16, 3.17, 3.18, 3.23.5, 4.5, 5.11, 6.2, 7.11, 7.44, 7.44.3, 9.7.1 & 9.12

Bjaalland Welch 2008, p. 55, pp. 28-30, pp. 48-49, pp. 57-58,p. 253, pp. 258-259, p. 264

Ströber 2011, p. 75, pp. 156-157, p. 160, pp. 192-195

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011999
2011999

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2011999

 

Dish

 

China

 

1700-1720

 

Height 30 mm (1.18 inch), diameter of rim 222 mm (8.74 inch), diameter of footring 122 mm (4.80 inch), weight 307 grams (10.83 ounce (oz.))

 

Dish on footring with a flat underglaze brown-edged rim (jia mangkou). Decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red, gold and overglaze green and black enamel, with a fish in a central roundel, surrounded by a border with flower heads and foaming waves. On the sides two fish alternating with flower sprays. The reverse is undecorated.

 

For a similarly decorated dish, please see:

The fish is a very ancient Chinese decorative motif. Scholars believe that the fish (and other aquatic creatures) were all strongly associated with the dragon and contributed to the eventual evolution of the dragon culture characteristic of China.

 

Fish (yu, ) has a phonetic similarity with yu () which means abundance. Images of fish symbolize plenitude and abundance, be it food, offspring, wealth or other riches. This explains why the fish pattern porcelain plate or bowl is so ubiquitous in China, even today. Who would not wish their dinner bowls to be always overflowing? Fish is always eaten during Chinese New Year, to bring the family an abundance of good wishes throughout the year.

 

Pairs of fish appear as early as the Zhou Dynasty (1027-256 BCE), but it was possibly the introduction of Buddhism into China that made them a particularly popular motif. Buddhism uses the motif of a pair of fishes as one of the Eight Buddhist Symbols. It signifies freedom from restraint.

 

Fish are thought to swim in pairs and appear to swim happily in their surroundings, so they are also the emblem of the joys of union and marital bliss. A happily married couple may be described as having ”the pleasures of fish in the water”, thus a pair of fish symbolizes harmony and mutual sexual pleasure.

 

Condition: Two firing flaws. A hairline with three tiny fleabites to the rim. A frit to the glaze on the sides.

 

References:

Jörg 1982/2, cat. 78

Eberhard 1986, pp. 106-107

Bartholomew 2006, p. 36 & cat. 2.9, 4.11, 6.11, 7.18

Bjaaland Welsh 2008, pp. 96-100 & p. 243

Ströber 2011, p.102

Sargent 2012, p.183

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011105
2011105

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2011105

 

Milk jug

 

China

 

1720-1730

 

Height including the cover 118 mm (4.65 inch), height excluding the cover 88 mm (3.46 inch), diameter 73 mm (2.87 inch), diameter of rim 33 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of footring 41 mm (1.61 inch)

 

Milk jug on footring, pear shaped body with handle, small triangular spout at the rim. The C-shaped handle is placed opposite the spout. Matching pierced cover with with pointed knob and underglaze brown-edged rim (jia mangkou). Decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red, gold and overglaze black and green enamel. The body is incised under the glaze with two groups of lotus flowers plants. On the body three scalloped panels filled with chrysanthemum flower heads on an underglaze blue ground. Near the foot a trellis-pattern border and round the footring a pointed leaves-pattern border. On the spout a single flowering branch and on the handle a floret between scrolls. The cover is decorated en suite.

 

Condition: A hairline to the rim of the body.

 

Reference:

Sargent 2012, p.183

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011005
2011005

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2011005

 

Teacup

 

China

 

1730-1735

 

Height 39 mm (1.54 inch), diameter of rim 74 mm (2.91 inch), diameter of footring 34 mm (1.34 inch), weight 40 grams (1.41 ounce (oz.))

 

Teacup on footring, slightly everted rim. Polychrome decorated in iron-red, gold and overglaze blue and black enamel with a flowering prunus tree growing from taihu (garden) rocks, two birds resting on taihu (garden) rockwork, a bird perched on a branch of a bamboo tree and a bird in flight. Round the inner rim a floral scroll border with four small flower heads. On the bottom an orchid (cymbidium virescens). The matching saucer is missing.

 

The orchid (cymbidium virescens), the Lan Hua. is a motif commonly seen on fine Chinese export porcelain of around 1740.

 

Condition: A frit to the rim.

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011324
2011324

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2011324

 

Teapot

 

China

 

1730-1740

 

Height with cover 122 mm (4.80 inch), height without cover 91 mm (3.58 inch), diameter handle to spout 172 mm (6.77 inch), diameter of rim 51 mm (2.00 inch), diameter of footring 59 mm (2.32 inch)

 

Teapot of globular shape on footring, straight spout with a curved C-shaped handle. The original cover is missing and replaced with a domed unmarked silver cover with a pointed knob. Decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red, gold and overglaze green and black enamel. On the body a flowering lotus and other flowering plants with two birds in flight, under the spout a single flowering lotus spray, on the spout and handle single flower sprays. Round the rim a foliate and floral border.

 

Only grown in China and Japan during the 17th Century, tea became known in the Netherlands early because the Dutch East India Company (VOC) shipped small quantities home. Its use as a beverage was established slowly, and was probably started by retired VOC employees who had become accustomed to drinking tea in the East. At a tea party, the expensive beverage was served in small teapots, one for each guest, filled with the leaves of the type he or she preferred. The tea was poured into small cups, while the teapot was refilled with hot water from a metal or sometimes ceramic kettle. (Jörg 2011/2, p.131)

 

Condition: Two chips to the tip of the spout and a glaze rough spot to the handle.

 

Reference:

Jörg 2011/2, p.131

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011362
2011362

Sold Ceramics - Sold Polychrome wares other since 1722 - Page 3

 

Object 2011362

 

Covered bowl

 

China

 

c.1780

 

Height including the cover 84 mm (4.65 inch), height excluding the cover 58 mm (3.46 inch), diameter of rim bowl 120 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of footring bowl 61 mm (1.61 inch), diameter of ring knob cover 120 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of mouthrim cover 110 mm (1.61 inch)

 

Bowl on footring, narrow spreading rim, domed cover with ring knob. Decorated in overglaze blue enamel and gold. On the outside of the bowl a blue enamel border with floral scrolls in gold. On the bottom a stylized border on the inner wall a border with Persian/Arabic writing/script and round the rim a blue enamel border with floral scrolls in gold. On the rim of the cover a blue enamel border with floral scrolls in gold. On top inside the ring knob a central roundel with Persian/Arabic writing/script, surrounded by a border of half circles. On the underside of the cover a wide border filled with Persian/Arabic writing/script,

 

Persian/Arabic writing/script was first introduced to Chinese porcelain in the fifteenth century. These kinds of writings on an object, often can be explained as a blessing or conveying some meaning. Considering the place used, this covered bowl was most likely made for the Middle East market and it is highly possible that the writing is conveying a religious message/blessing.

 
Porcelain with Arabic inscriptions was made for the Islamic market or for the flourishing Muslim trading communities in South China in the early 16th century. (Jörg & Van Campen 1997, p.36)
 
Fuchs II & Impey show a similar shaped and decorated covered bowl and dish, decorated with ayahs (verses) from the Qur'an (Koran), these were made for the Islamic market. The Chinese began trading with the middle East as early as the 10th century and designed and decorated porcelain specifically with that market in mind. Among the forms were large platters and bowls suitable for the communal banquets favoured in that region; the decoration consisted mainly of floral designs and calligraphy, as Islamic law forbid the portrayal of human forms. (Fuchs & Howard 2005, p.91)
 
Condition: A firing flaw, a fleabite and a frit to the rim of the cover.

 

References:

Gordon 1977, cat. 41.

Jörg & Van Campen 1997, cat. 11.

Mudge 2000, p.188,

Fuchs & Howard 2005, cat. 52.

 

Price: Sold.

 

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