The present vase is striking for its elegant proportions and the lively calligraphic gestures of its lines. It belongs to a small group of carved 'peony' bottle vases produced at the Yaozhou kilns in the Northern Song dynasty. Vases of this type include a nearly identical example in the collection of the MOA Museum of Art, Atami, Japan, published in The Masterpieces of Yaozhou Ware, Osaka Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, 1997, cat. no. 35; a closely related example but with a double band of stylized petals at the neck sold in our London rooms, 11th May 2011, lot 2; a second vase of that design sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 6th April 2015, lot 147; a slightly larger example set on a spreading foot is in the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, coll. no. C810-1936; and another of that form is in the collection of the Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C., acc. no. F.1919.90.