It is rare to find a Qianlong vase of this elegant shape and combination of elephant head handles and decoration and only two further examples appear to be known; see one sold in our London rooms, 14th July 1981, lot 122; and the other also sold in our London rooms, 15th June 1982, lot 378. The form of the vase and the design composition are similar to that found on Qianlong colour-ground vases; see a large pink-sgraffiato ground vase decorated with bats amongst lotus blooms and swirling clouds, but with archaistic dragon handles, sold at Christie's New York, 21st March 2001, lot 280, and again in these rooms, 9th October 2007, lot 1220; and a turquoise-ground example, painted with lotus scrolls in famille-rose enamels and with scroll handles, from the W.W. Winkworth collection, sold in our London rooms, 12th December 1972, lot 175, and again in these rooms, 24th May 1978, lot 253. Compare also a Jiaqing vase, with reign mark and of the period, of related form and decorated with a floral scroll and central lotus and a bat, shou character and archaic dragons on the neck, in the Huahaitang collection, included in the exhibition Ethereal Elegance. Porcelain Vases of the Imperial Qing, Art Museum, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 2007, cat. no. 136.
For further vases with elephant head handles see one, decorated with stylised lotus blooms and the bajixiang in famille-rose enamels on a colour ground, sold in these rooms, 20th May 1981, lot 873, and again, 19th May 1982, lot 342; and a blue and white vase painted with the bajixiang amongst lotus blooms sold in these rooms, 8th October 2009, lot 1699.
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