A FINE BLUE AND WHITE 'PEACH' MOONFLASK SEAL MARK AND PERIOD OF QIANLONG
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Qianlong mark and period moonflasks of this type are held in important museum and private collections worldwide; see one in the Nanjing Museum, published in Treasures in the Royalty: The Official Kiln Porcelain of the Chinese Qing Dynasty, Shanghai, 2004, cat. no. 220; and another in the Indianapolis Museum of Art, included in the Museum’s exhibition Beauty and Tranquillity. The Eli Lilly Collection of Chinese Art, Indianapolis, 1983, cat. no. 116. Further examples include one from the collection of R.I.C. Herridge, sold in these rooms, 29th November 1978, lot 235.
The design of peaches and bats, with its highly auspicious message, appears to have originated in the Yongzheng reign (1722-1735) and grew in popularity during the Qianlong period (1736-1795), when it was represented in all possible media. The bat (fu) and peach (shoutao) create the pun fushou shuangquan (‘May you have both blessings and longevity’), which makes this piece particularly suited to be presented as a gift on the occasion of a birthday.