A white jade marriage bowl, Qing dynasty, 18th / 19th century | 清十八 / 十九世紀 白玉雕年年有餘紋龍耳活環洗
Property from the Brooklyn Museum, sold to support museum collections
A white jade marriage bowl
Qing dynasty, 18th / 19th century
清十八 / 十九世紀 白玉雕年年有餘紋龍耳活環洗
the broad rounded sides resting on a stepped splayed foot rising to a slightly incurved rim, set with a pair of winged-dragon-shaped handles each suspending a loose ring, the center of the interior worked in high relief with a pair of catfish amidst lingzhi and foliate scroll, the remainder of the surface left plain to emphasize the lustrous white stone tinged a pale celadon
Width 9 ¼ in., 23.5 cm
Each handle with a chip to one tip of the dragon wing, one of which has an associated bruise. A minute chip to the foot and scattered minute nicks to edges. The stone with very faint icy streaks and fissures.
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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.
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Collection of Mrs. Walter N. Rothschild (1896-1987).
Gifted to the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, in 1963 (acc. no. 63.6.5).
Walter N. Rothschild 夫人 (1896-1987) 收藏
'Marriage bowls' were popular during the Qing period, and were decorated with auspicious motifs that conferred blessings and good wishes upon the owners. The winged dragon is one of the nine traditional representations of the creature and is symbolic of imperial power. Notably, when viewed from the top the winged dragons resemble butterflies, a motif that was commonly employed on marriage bowls due to their symbolism of marital bliss. Furthermore, the pair of catfish on this piece represents the wish, ‘May you have plenty year after year’ (niannian youyu).
Compare marriage bowls with slightly different forms and variations of the winged dragons, such as two illustrated in Zhongguo yuqi quanji [Compendium of Chinese Jade], vol. 6, Shijiazhung, 1993, pls 314 and 316. See also one attributed to the Qianlong period, with related handles but with the rest of the vessel left plain, sold in our Hong Kong rooms, 8th April 2011, lot 3224.