These teapots were very popular in the West with a wealthy audience eager for all things exotic and were first popularised in Britain by William, 1st Earl of Cadogan (1675 – 1726). Conceived to delight and amuse, through being filled from the base, they figured in important collections and were used to entertain guests. Their origins though are much earlier having been used domestically in China and across the Sino-Korean peninsula from the late Ming Period. It is also more likely they were originally designed to be used as waterpots, as from a practical point of view cleaning the interior would have been difficult.
There are some chips to the leaves particularly near the handle on one side, and to the extremities overall. With some minor restorations to the glaze on the body, foot and snout. There are some firing imperfections including minor glaze inconsistencies, firing lines, iron spots. "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."