Lot 505
  • 505


80,000 - 120,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Height 12 3/8  in., 31.4 cm
elegantly potted, the pear-shaped body rising from a short slightly tapered foot to a waisted neck and everted rim, painted in rich tones of underglaze-blue with a peony scroll encircling the body, framed above and below by bands of alternating lappets and florets, the neck painted with two registers of lotus scroll, divided by horizontal lines and upright lappets, the foot with a band of keyfret, the base with a six-character mark in underglaze blue within a double circle


Probably Collection of Arthur Gilstrap Soames (1854-1934).
Collection of Captain A. Granville Soames, O.B.E. (1886-1962).
Sotheby's Sheffield Park, Uckfield, Sussex, 8th March 1954, lot 40.
English Private Collection.

Catalogue Note

While following in the tradition of the early 15th century in both form and design, this vase displays the creative freedom enjoyed by craftsmen active at Jingdezhen during the Jiajing reign. A period marked by economic prosperity and great luxury at court, porcelain production in the Ming experienced a last flowering under Jiajing. In order to fulfill a significantly increased demand for imperial porcelain, private kilns at Jingdzhen were employed alongside the imperial kilns. This required a greater tolerance by the Imperial Household Department in quality control which, in turn, allowed greater freedom in the interpretation of prescribed designs. Such new-found freedom is epitomized by the present vase in its unorthodox rendering of the floral band that frames the peony scroll, and the pointed lappet band at the neck. Vases of this type are held in important museums and private collections worldwide: a closely related example in the Palace Museum, Beijing, is illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures in the Palace Museum. Blue and White Porcelain with Underglaze Red (II), Hong Kong, 2000, pl. 83; one in the Shanghai Museum, Shanghai is published in Lu Minghua, Mingdai guanyao ciqi [Imperial porcelain of the Ming dynasty], Shanghai, 2007, pl. 1-51; and another in the Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, was included in the museum’s exhibition Blue and White in the East Asia, Osaka, 1997, cat. no. 15. See also an example in the Huaihaitang Collection, exhibited in Imperial Porcelain of the Mid to Late Ming, Art Museum, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 2012, cat. no. 35; one illustrated in Regina Krahl, Chinese Ceramics from the Meiyintang Collection, London, 2010, vol. 4, pt. 1, pl. 1693; and another from the collection of E. Hultmark, illustrated in L. Reidemeister, Ming-Porzellane in Schwedischen Sammlungen, Berlin, 1935, pl. 19a.

For the prototype of this form and design, see a vase attributed to the Yongle reign, in the British Museum, London, illustrated in Jessica Harrison-Hall, Ming Ceramics in the British Museum, London, 2001, pl. 3:17.