Cohen & Cohen: Take Two!

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2 - 11 November 2017  COHEN & COHEN PO BOX 366 REIGATE RH2 2BB Tel:+44 (0) 1737 242180  Fax: +44 (0) 1737 226236   Email: Website: Gallery at: 1 Essex Court, 30 St James’s Place, London SW1A 1NR By Appointment Only

© Cohen & Cohen 2017 Published October 2017 ISBN  0 9537185 7 6

Published by Cohen & Cohen Photographs by Dairy Digital Imaging Printed and bound by Albe De Coker, Antwerp With thanks to:  Graeme Bowpitt, Tan Yuanyuan, Cornelia Aust, Cissie van Riet, Hugh Jolly,  Angela Howard, Tom Maes, Geert Bogaert

FOREWORD This year’s title arises from rare opportunities to purchase important pairs of a number of forms, many of them exceptional examples. Once again the Pronk workshop is strongly represented with a truly exceptional pair of wall sconces and a number of square section bottles of which the most rare (for reasons explained in the text) is the yellow ground pair. A private collection consisting mainly of pairs of vases, all of high quality but topped by a pair of outstanding baluster vases painted with cockerels is one of many highlights of the famille rose genre, which also includes garnitures, pairs of wine coolers and a number of eggshell pieces. Figures are represented by a lady in the costume of the Frankfurt Ghetto and by two fine pairs of candle holders, one as famille rose court ladies and the other as famille verte boys. There is a large pair of armorial monteiths for the Portuguese market and a small number of rare armorial plates and dishes, a massive pair of blue and white tureens, covers and stands of baroque form together with other tureens of unusual form, which include a pair of turquoise biscuit examples identical to gilt bronze mounted ones  displayed  in the Louvre. The American market is unusually well represented this year. Possibly the stand out item is the bowl commissioned for Henry Eckford, father of the US Navy, but almost as important are the two hong bowls, one in famille rose and the other en grisaille both showing the Stars and Stripes flying among the European flags. Over the past thirty years we have certainly bought and sold more hong bowls than any other dealer but, up until now, had never found an eighteenth century example with the stars and stripes. To have two is unprecedented. We have a strong showing of painted enamel that includes a number of pieces from the Beijing workshop demonstrating the variety and outstanding quality of workmanship and virtuosity of the Chinese artists. Also for the Chinese market is a fine vase decorated in under-glaze copper red and an eggshell bowl of unprecedented size and exceptional quality having the six character mark of Yongzheng and of the period. As  with  our  more  recent  catalogues  Will  Motley  has  not  only  researched and written the text but continues to update his research on items from previous catalogues.  His persistence and determination to miss nothing continues to amaze us. Thanks, as always, go to my wife and partner, Ewa, who quietly supervises both Will and myself. Michael Cohen


Dinner Plate Kangxi period circa 1720 Dutch Market Diameter 8¾ inches; 22cm An  unusual  Chinese  export  porcelain  dinner  plate decorated in an underglaze deep cobalt blue with designs of vases of flowers. This  interesting  design  copies  the  style  of Dutch  delft  dishes  and  plates  of  this  period,  possibly directly from a ceramic example taken to Canton and transported to Jingdezhen. References: Howard  &  Ayers  1978,  p84,  a  blue  and  white

Chinese plate after a Delft original; Howard 1994, p47, another such plate.

Dutch Delft plate circa 1710-35 in the Rijksmuseum, (BK-NM-10808)



Charger Kangxi/Yongzheng period circa 1722-25 Dutch or Chinese Market Diameter: 19½ inches; 50cm A rare Chinese export porcelain large charger decorated in underglaze blue with Chinese scenes, the centre with a narrative scene, the rim with fan shape reserves on a fish roe ground. This rare design is from a single set of flatware for the Dutch Market, most of which is together in one collection. The design is sometimes called a punishment scene, as images of unpleasant Chinese punishments were popular in the West. However the poses of the two men either side of the prone figure communicate something else. The  theme  here  is  about  hospitality  to travelling pilgrims and the figure lying on the ground has suffered a mishap. The other figures are coming to his aid  and  offering  help.  The  four  rim  panels  also  show Daoist pilgrims apparently being tempted - the symbols of  deer,  ruyi and  peach  are  all  connected  with immortality, and the fourth has what looks like a ‘musical stone’, another Daoist precious object, atop a fencepost. This symbolism is very Chinese in origin and would not have  been  readable  by  a  Western  eye,  leading  some scholars  to  conclude  that  these  dishes  may  have  been made for the market within Chinese settlements in Asia rather than for export to the West.

One is never as unhappy as one thinks, nor as happy as one hopes. Duc de la Rochefoucauld,  Sentences et Maximes de Morale, 1664



Pair of Tureens, Covers and Stands Qianlong period circa 1740-50 European Market Length of Stands: 18½ inches; 47cm Length of Tureens: 17 inches; 43cm A pair of Chinese export porcelain tureens, covers and stands of elaborate baroque shape, decorated in underglaze blue with landscapes and complex borders of flowers  and  diaper  panels,  the  tureens  with  lion  mask handles, the covers with coronal knops.  This shape is following a baroque silver original though the precise model has not been identified. Similar ceramic tureens are known in European porcelain and French faïence. It is rare in Chinese export porcelain. A few examples of this shape are also recorded with famille rose decoration.  References: Cohen & Cohen 2015, p66, No 42, a single example.

Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it, so that when men come to be undeceived, it is too late; the jest is over, and the tale hath had its effect: like a man, who hath thought of a good repartee when the discourse is changed, or the company parted; or like a physician, who hath found out an infallible medicine, after the patient is dead. Jonathan Swift The Examiner No. XIV  (Thursday, November 9th, 1710)



Pair of Tureens and Covers Kangxi period circa 1720  French Market  Length: 10¼ inches; 26cm A fine and rare pair of turquoise glazed tureens and covers modelled in shell form, the covers with shell knops, the  bases  supported  by  a  sculpted  foot,  the  interiors glazed white. These striking tureens are glazed with a deep turquoise alkali glaze probably derived from the alkali glazes first developed for fahua style ceramics, which in turn are imitating falan or cloisonné enamels. The glaze is a high-potassia eutectic coloured with copper and tin to produce a rich satisfying pigment. It is very temperature sensitive and quite difficult to get an even colour over larger pieces so most known examples from this period are quite small. A few parrots and other small figures are known with this glaze. In Europe this colour was known as bleu céleste. It was first developed at Meissen but then copied at Sèvres by Jean Hellot circa 1750. Porcelains of this colour were popular in France as the colour contrasted so well with the ormolu.  In  France  the  fashion  for  lachinage (oriental style) developed from the late 17th century onwards and boomed in the 1740s with a vogue for Chinese porcelains elaborately  mounted  in  ormolu,  mainly  celadons  and some famille verte examples, but the best examples were these turquoise glazed pieces as the colour so effectively contrasts with the ormolu. This taste was driven by the influential ‘marchand-merciers’ such as Charles-François Julliot, who commented on the attraction of porcelain:  "Les porcelaines anciennes …ornent avec un ton de noblesse, aussi remarquable par la singularité des formes, que par la beauté du grenu de la pâte, le tact flou &  séduisant  des  couleurs  ce  qui  leur  a  maintenu  la préférence chez ceux qui ont encore aujourd’hui le goût du vrai beau". A small number of these tureens is known, all other examples having eighteenth century French ormolu mounts and all have lost the curved shell scroll at the end of the tureen, replaced by animal heads in ormolu (swans or lions) in most examples.


It is not clear why these tureens have avoided ormolu incarceration, though they might have once been mounted and later freed. However the survival of the fragile  and  vulnerable  shell  scroll  suggests  that  they  were never mounted. Their bold simplicity and strong colour now appeal to a more contemporary aesthetic. References: Verdier, Philippe, Antiques, April 1961, p369, a pair

of Kangxi whelk-shaped tureens with similar knops and the same

turquoise glaze, with ormolu mounts; Cohen & Cohen 2006,

No 4, this pair; Sotheby’s Paris, 28 Nov 2016, lot 9, the lot notes with an extensive and useful account of such tureens. Other examples and related porcelains:

1. Frick collection, New York: a single with mounts

by Pierre Gouthière, with a swan’s head and wings. 2. Louvre, Paris:

a. a pair with very similar mounts to the

Frick  example,  also  by  Gouthière,  made  for  the  Marquis  de

Clermont D’Amboise and entering the Louvre in 1794.

b. a single example in the Grog Carven

collection, with more restrained mounts.

3.  Qizilbash  Collection:  a  trio  of  these  tureens

consisting  of  a  pair  and  single  with  different  mounts  and incorporating additional turquoise glazed Chinese lions. The

trio came from the collection of Baron Masham of Swinton, the single  originally  having  been  in  the  collection  of  Jean  de Julienne,  then  with  Julliot  and  then  Henry-Camille  de

Beringhen (1693-1770), Marquis de Châteauneuf et d’Uxelles. The pair were in the collection of Augustin Blondel de Gagny

(1695-1776). The trio, part of the Qizilbash collection, sold for €1,147,500 at Sotheby’s Paris, 28 November 2016, lot 9. 4. Other possible similar examples include:

a. a pair in the collection of Baron Guy

de Rothschild collection at the Château de Ferrières

b.  a  pair  of  pots pourris listed  in  the

collection of Renaud-César, Duc de Choiseul-Praslin (1735-91)

c.  a  pair  listed  in  the  Mazarin  sale,  10

December 1781, lot 106, with a fretwork (forme chantornée) base. 5.  A  few  pairs  of  large  whelk-shaped  tureens  in

Chinese turquoise glazed porcelain, mounted as pots pourris are

also  known,  including  a  pair  in  the  Walters  Art  Museum, Baltimore and another in the Grog Carven collection in the Louvre.


Teapot and Cover Kangxi period circa 1710 European market Length: 7½ inches: 19cm A  Chinese  export  porcelain  teapot  of  ribbed  globular form, decorated in famille verte enamels with tree peonies and a Chinese phoenix (fenghuang). This  is  an  elegant  rare  form  of  teapot.  The decoration  includes  the  Chinese  phoenix  which  is  a mythical bird not to be confused with the very different Western phoenix that rises from the ashes, originally a middle eastern mythical bird. The Chinese phoenix is a composite bird with parts of a rooster, a pheasant, a peacock and a mandarin duck. It was widely used in Chinese art and represents several things, including the East (sometimes together with  a  tiger  representing  the  West)  and  the  Empress, often in conjunction with peonies, as found here.

A man does not attain the status of Galileo merely because he is persecuted; he must also be right. Stephen Jay Gould,  Ever Since Darwin, 1977



Wine Ewer & Cover Kangxi period circa 1700 Dutch Market Height: 8 inches; 21cm A  Chinese  export  porcelain  wine  ewer  and  cover,  of hexagonal section with over-arching handle and spout modelled  and  painted  as  bamboo,  a  reticulated  floral panel to each side, the domed cover on a high neck, all painted in bright famille verte enamels with flowers and Daoist precious objects.

The point is that we are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, it is possible to carry on this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield. George Orwell In Front of Your Nose, Tribune (22 March 1946)



Teapot, Cover & Stand Yongzheng period circa 1730 European Market Length: 6½ inches; 16cm A Chinese export porcelain famille rose teapot, cover and stand of globular form, decorated in famille rose enamels, the  body  with  lotus  petal  panels,  alternating  those  of peony on a black ground and lotus on a pink ground, repeated on the cover with a petal-edge rim and on the stand, the handle with granular surface imitating a lotus stem, painted pale blue. This rare teapot has a coherent design using stylised  lotus  petals  and  other  lotus  features,  and  a sophisticated use of contrasting enamels. References: Williamson 1970, plate XXIII, a teapot, cover and stand with a similar decorative scheme from the collection of the Hon. Mrs Ronald Greville.

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard. HL Mencken A Few Pages of Notes, The Smart Set (January 1915)



Teapot & Cover Yongzheng period circa 1730 European Market Length: 5½ inches; 14cm A  Chinese  export  porcelain  teapot  and  cover,  of  pear shape,  brightly  painted  in  famille rose enamels,  with  a reticulated roundel and appliqué flowers on a pink fish roe ground with prunus flowers, the cover with the same border and central reticulated roundel, the knop as an embroidered ball, the base of the body with two layers of bright gadroon panels. This  is  a  charming  example  of  an  unusual form. In the period from the late Yongzheng to the early Qianlong there was an impressive range and inventiveness in teapot design for the export market, coinciding with the developing fashion for tea drinking in polite society in  Europe.

Think about how stupid the average person is, and then realise that half of ’em are stupider than that. George Carlin


9 Pair of Eggshell Deep Plates Yongzheng period circa 1730 Chinese or European Market Diameter: 8¾ inches; 22cm A  pair  of  fine  Chinese  eggshell  porcelain  deep  plates decorated in bright famille rose enamels with a Chinese domestic scene of a lady with two boys, one holding a book, the rim with reserves of peony on a pink cell diaper border. References: Williamson 1970, plate XXXIII, a similar plate; Jörg 1997, p216, Cat 241, a saucer with a similar scene; Cohen & Cohen 2006, p19, No 10, a similar saucer; Du Boulay 1963, p119, a similar saucer

We all look for happiness, but without knowing where to find it: like drunkards who look for their house, knowing dimly that they have one. Voltaire,  Notebooks (c.1735-c.1750)



Pair of Eggshell Deep Plates Yongzheng period circa 1730 European Market Diameter: 8¾ inches; 22cm A pair of extremely fine Chinese eggshell porcelain soup plates painted in overglaze blue enamels with an interior scene of a Chinese couple. This  unusual  decoration  is  a  subtle combination  of  blue  enamel,  black  and  gilt.  The porcelain is the finest eggshell, which is characteristic of the best ‘cabinet’ pieces from this period.



Eggshell Deep Plate Yongzheng period circa 1730 Diameter: 8½ inches; 21.5cm A very fine Chinese export porcelain eggshell deep plate, decorated in famille rose with a central scene of a lady and two boys, the rim with floral panels on a gilt floral border. Provenance: the  Popowich  collection;  previously  with Cohen & Cohen. References: Williamson 1970, plate XXXII, a deep plate with the identical decoration.

As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron. H.L. Mencken  On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe 26 July 1920



Bowl Yongzheng six character mark and of the period Chinese Market Diameter: 9½ inches; 23cm An  extremely  fine  Chinese  eggshell  porcelain  bowl, decorated in famille rose enamels inside and out, with an interior panel of a domestic scene of two ladies and two boys watching a pair of rabbits, the interior rim with a border  having  quatrefoil  panels  of  fruit  and  flowers reserved on a dense floral ground, the exterior with four large panels of flowers alternating with dragon roundels, all on borders of pink cell diaper and blue Y-diaper, the base with underglaze blue six character Yongzheng mark within a double circle, and of the period. This  fine  bowl  exhibits  the  best  quality painting of the period on eggshell porcelain, and the bowl is unusually large, most examples recorded being smaller. References: Williamson 1970, plate XXXIII, an eggshell deep

plate with the same central scene and some similarities in the

rim decoration too; Santos & Allen 2005,  p57, No18, a plate

with the central scene; Pinto de Matos 2003, Cat 47 for a plate

with similar decoration.


La Vie en Famille Rose Famille rose,  known  in  Chinese  as  fencai, meaning  'soft  colours',  and  later  as  yangcai,  meaning 'foreign colours' was introduced towards the end of the reign of Kangxi  around 1720-22.  For those new to Chinese porcelain decoration the  terms  famille rose and  famille verte can  be  very confusing. Essentially it is the mixing of the opaque white and yellow enamels with the new translucent pink and other enamels that defines the famille rose palette and distinguishes it from the famille verte decoration. Famille verte painting  uses  the  thinness  of  the  translucent enamels against the white of the porcelain for effect (like watercolour painting) whereas famille rose uses opaque white enamel for similar effect (more like oil painting). Some writers today no longer use the old terms and refer instead to translucent or opaque enamels. The  famille verte enamels  use  a  simple  leadsilicate base which had been used in China for hundreds of years. However the famille rose enamels are lead-alkali silicates of the cloisonné type with potassium oxide which renders them opaque and gives them a waxy feel when applied thickly. The translucent over glaze blue enamel introduced in the Kangxi period also uses the lead-alkali silicate base and may have begun the process that led to the development of famille rose enamels.1 The origins of the famille rose palette are still much  discussed.  There  are  three  new  enamels  that characterise famille rose: an opaque white enamel and an opaque yellow enamel which seem to have been derived from Chinese cloisonné enamels, the white being leadarsenate,  known  from  Chinese  cloisonné  in  the  17th century, and the yellow containing lead-stannate, used in cloisonné from the 15th century.  The translucent pink enamel (using colloidal gold in a lead-oxide-potassia-silica base) evolved separately outside China and probably came from Europe with the Jesuits,  derived  from  German  enamelling  techniques. The  use  of  pink  enamel  with  gold  has  a  long  history having  been  used  in  Roman  glass,  Renaissance  metal enamelling  and  European  ceramics  in  the  late  17th century. The pink enamel was derived from colloidal gold in salt form called Purple of Cassius. This took its name  from  Andreas  Cassius  a  seventeenth  century physician and chemist from Hamburg.  Williamson  (1970)  states  that  it  is  prepared thus: "Into a clear solution of stannous chloride in water


is  poured  a  solution  of  ferric  chloride  till  the  yellowbrown colour turns to green. Then into it is stirred a solution of trichloride of gold, diluted with 300 to 400 parts water. Presently the result turns brown, and brown precipitate is deposited."  It can be worked in other ways but this is the most likely method used by the Chinese at that time. It is a difficult process as it must be done at neutral pH despite the trichloride of gold being made using nitrohydrochloric acid (aqua regia). The temperature of firing also affects the final colours of the enamel. 650°C Red Brown 800°C Rose 900°C Rose Purple 920°C Rose Violet 950°C Violet 980°C Pale Violet 1000°C Very pale Violet and then the colour disappears altogether  (from work done at the Wedgwood factory and quoted in Williamson). It is impressive how quickly the new opaque enamels  were  exploited  by  the  artists  to  create  such exquisite  and  sophisticated  pieces  as  the  eggshell  and ruby back  dishes seen in this catalogue. Most date to around  1730  and  these  enamels  had  only  been successfully developed for less than a decade.  References: 1. Needham, J, Wood, N and Kerr, R 2004, Science and Civilisation in China: Volume 5, p634-652, discussion of famille rose enamels and their origins.


Vase Qianlong period (1736-1795) Chinese Imperial Market,  Beijing Imperial Workshops Height: 9 inches; 23cm A Beijing Imperial enamel on copper vase of ovoid form, wth two landscape panels of European figures reserved on a ground of moulded and gilded scrollwork against a blue enamel, one having two men, one caressing a sheep, the other with a shepherd entertaining a young lady by playing the bagpipes. From 1680 the Emperor Kangxi set up over thirty specialised workshops in the Forbidden City in Beijing  to  produce  a  range  of  decorative  arts  for  the Imperial Court. Among them were those that specialised in  enamelling  techniques  on  metals.  By  the  reign  of Qianlong some of these were producing an exciting and sophisticated range of vessels using opaque enamels fired on copper. Western figures in European clothing were a popular subject at this period, feeding the fashion in the Imperial court for ‘Occidentalism’.  These  European  subject  designs  are  new compositions created by the Chinese artists and almost all examples are slightly different, suggesting that each piece was unique. Some are made in pairs with the scenes painted in mirror image.  These scenes show the influence of Western artists, many of them Jesuit  missionaries, who had been employed  by  the  Emperor  Kangxi  to  work  with  the Chinese  artists  to  develop  new  techniques  and  styles. Notable  among  them  was  Giuseppe  Castiglione,  S.J. (Láng shìníng) (1688-1766) who arrived in China in Beijing circa  1716  and  produced  work  during  the  reigns  of Yongzheng  and  Qianlong.  Another  was  French  Jesuit missionary-artist Jean-Denis Attiret (1702-1768).  In 1719 the  French  missionary  and  enamel  specialist,  JeanBaptiste Gravereau, (Chen Zhongxin), was sent to Beijing by  the  Viceroy  of  Guangdong  to  teach  enamelling techniques to craftsmen working in the Palace Workshops (see  the  catalogue  to  the  exhibition  Treasures from Guangdong to the Qing Court, Art Gallery, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 1987, p. 54).


These  Jesuits  are  also  thought  to  have introduced the pink enamel, extensively used in famille rose, to China. The painting style has a number of features, including the use of stippling and shading, especially on the faces of the people, and a stronger sense of light and dark (chiaroscuro) in the composition.  The astonishingly high quality of these pieces made in Beijing is always striking.


Vase Qianlong four character mark and of the period Chinese Imperial Market Beijing Imperial Workshops Height: 8½ inches; 21cm A Beijing Imperial enamel on copper vase of baluster form with wide everted rim, with three bands of moulded ormolu  of  banana  leaves,  and  chinese  character medallions,  and  four  bands  of  brightly  painted decoration, the top and bottom with flowers on a yellow ground,  the  others  with  cartouches  of  flowers  and European ladies on a green ground, the base with four character reign mark within a double square and of the period. The  panels  are  exquisitely  painted,  the  very finest  example  of  such  enamelling  from  the  Imperial workshops in the Forbidden City. Related obejcts: Sotheby’s  Hong  Kong,  9  October  2012,  lot 3026, brushwasher with similar scenes and gilt-bronze border; also see a melon-shaped covered box illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Metal-bodied Enamel Ware, Hong Kong, 2002, pl. 208; a ewer with a loop handle, in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, illustrated in Enamel Ware in the Ming and Ch’ing Dynasties, Taipei, 1999, pl. 118, together with a drum-form jar, pl. 119.



Tiered Vessel, Cover & Stand Qianlong four character mark and of the period Imperial Market Beijing Imperial Workshops Height: 7¼ inches; 19cm A very rare Beijing painted enamel on copper two tiered vessel, cover and stand, brightly painted with blue ‘dragon and phoenix’ roundels on a gound of lotus on yellow, the upper tier with four handles, the interior of the vessel enamelled turquoise, the white base centred with a blue four-character  reign  mark  within  a  double  square,  all supported on a stand with a lobed top and four cabriole legs on a circular stretcher. Provenance: collection of Paavo Juho Hynninen (18831960), former Finnish diplomat and Minister of Foreign Affairs Related Objects: The Compendium of Collections in the Palace Museum. Enamels, vol. 5, Painted Enamels in the Qing Dynasty, Beijing, 2011, pls. 150 and 151, two wide tiered bowls, similarly composed of bands of floral decoration, with stands of similar form but of cloisonné enamel, with Qianlong marks and of the period, together with a ‘European Subject’ vase and cover on a stand, pl. 148, and various cups and saucers illustrated pls. 83, 85-86, 188-190, together with a covered bowl with lobed saucer, pl. 124.



Covered Cup & Stand Qianlong period (1736-96) Chinese Market Diameter of Stand: 6 inches; 15cm A  Beijing  painted  enamel  on  copper  cup,  cover  and stand, the footed cup having a domed cover with metal finial,    finely  painted  all  over  with  European  subject scenes,  the  cover  with  three  unidentifed  scenes  of  a cowherd, the cup with three scenes of Classical mythology and the stand with a biblical scene, all within cartouches reserved on a dense floral ground. This  cup  belongs  to  a  small  group  of  such pieces made in the Beijing enamelling workshops with European subjects, intended for the Chinese market. A few examples are known with some of the same scenes and one rare example is also recorded in porcelain, now in the Peabody Essex Museum. Unlike many examples of European subjects on painted enamel, these scenes would appear to be taken directly from Western prints, though the precise sources are mostly unclear.  The three panels on the cover seem related and could be from a biblical series, though they are as yet unidentified. The three panels on the cups are related - two of them are taken from a single image that is also found on some export grisaille dinner plates, showing Cybele in a Chariot and Flora, Ceres and Plenty seated beside a tree; other export plates just have Cybele on her chariot. The  third  shows  two  standing  figures,  probably Vertumnus and Pomona, and this scene is also recorded en grisaille on export porcelain teawares.


Another painted enamel cup, sold at auction some years ago in Salisbury, has two of these scenes and then a third scene of two figures, that could possibly be a biblical scene of the Visitation, but no source for that has been found either. The scene on the stand is identifed as biblical and shows the Adoration of the Golden Calf from the Royaumont bible (see the next page). References:  Sargent  2012,  p242,  No  118,  a  similar example but made in porcelain.

Moses Breaking the Tablets This image was created by Matthaeus Merian the Elder  for  his  Icones Biblicae and  published  initially  in booklets of plates from 1627 and then in a complete Bible in 1630 (Strasbourg) using a German translation by Martin Luther (1483-1546).  It is illustrating Exodus 32:19, The Golden Calf and Moses breaking the Tablets. Two others from this series are known on Chinese export: The Finding of Moses & David and Bathsheba. Merian’s image for the Baptism of Christ is very similar to that found on earlier export pieces too, though the composition for that is much copied by many artists.. A 1648 edition, (Iconum Bibliarum) engraved and published by Andern Theil & Nicolaus Visscher is known (see illustration top right). In 1669 (Paris) an illustrated version of the bible, Histoire du Vieux et du Nouveau Testament, was printed by P Le Petit, written by Nicolas Fontaine (1625-1709) secretary to the jansenist Isaac-Louis Le Maistre de Sacy, who was possibly a contributing author and translator but was at the time  imprisoned  in  the  Bastille.    This  used  the  Merian images,  re-engraved  in  a  smaller  size,  reversing  the compositions.  Known  as  the  Bible de Royaumont it  was reissued several times, including 1697 (see illustration right).  In 1724 a larger edition was produced with new re-engravings, which reversed the images back to the Merian orientations. It was this edition that probably found its way to China and was the source for this piece, though these Merian  images  were  much  copied  throughout  the  18th century.


from Iconum Bibliorum, 1648, Andern Theil & Nicolaus Visscher after Matthaus Merian the elder (Author’s collection)

p106 from the Royaumont bible illustrations, this edition 1697, after Matthaus Merian the elder (Author’s collection)

detail of the centre of a Chinese export dinner plate in the Rijksmuseum (AK-NM-13508)

detail of grisaille coffee cup with the Vertumnus & Pomona scene (courtesy Angela Howard)


Altar Garniture Qianlong period 1736-96 Chinese Market Height: 16 inches; 41cm A rare Chinese three piece painted enamel on copper altar garniture consisting of a covered censer and two candlesticks, of archaistic form, painted with ‘millefleures’, the interiors green. These shapes follow ritual vessels made for the altars  in  Chinese  temples.  The  dense  millefleures decoration is of a very high quality and few pieces like this  are  recorded.  One  small  vase  with  the  same decoration, with Qianlong mark and of the period, was at Clandon Park in Surrey, now presumed lost in the fire of April 2015.  I am patient with stupidity but not with those who are proud of it. Edith Sitwell, poet & critic,  The Last Years of a Rebel (1967)



Pair of Saucer Dishes Qianlong period 1736-95 Chinese or Western market Diameter: 13½ inches; 34 cm  A good pair of Chinese painted enamel on copper large saucer dishes, finely painted to both sides, the front with central European subject scenes, the rims each with five quatrefoil  panels  of  mythical  beasts  and  their  young, reserved on an iron red and green cell diaper, the reverses with sprays of flowers. These are of exceptional quality and probably date from very early in the reign of the Qianlong emperor. The central European subject scenes are an example of the ‘reverse chinoiserie’ decoration that is found on a range  of  painted  enamel  items  from  this  period.  The European  figures  have  been  rearranged  into  a  new composition by the Chinese artists, in a scene that seems strange to a Western eye. They are not copied directly from Western print sources and were made to supply a taste for Western subjects that were fashionable in China.  The  comparable  decorative  schemes  in  the West might be Meissen porecelain with panels of Chinese scenes, after the designs of Petrus Schenck. It is interesting to note that the figures on these dishes  have  European  clothes  and  hairstyles  from  the 1680 suggesting they are derived from prints taken to China some sixty year before. A  similar  dish,  formerly  in  the  Museum  of Practical  Geology,  Jermyn  Street,  is  in  the  Victoria  & Albert Museum (No 4936-1901), with a different central scene and panels of beasts and their young, though with a different colouring in the cell diaper.



Basin Qianlong period 1736-95 European Market Diameter: 16 inches; 40cm A Chinese painted enamel on copper basin of flattened form,  brightly  painted  with  two  birds  surrounded  by flowers, the rim a dense floral border, the cavetto with a band of blue scrolling foliage, the reverse with further sprays of flowers and three insects. This is a wonderful example of such vibrant painting on early enamel on copper pieces.



Wine Ewer & Cover Qianlong period 1736-95 Western or Chinese Market Height: 9 inches; 23cm A fine Chinese painted enamel on copper wine ewer and cover,  of  quatrefoil  section  with  overarching  handle, painted with panels of European figures, the cover of unusual sunken form. The  European  designs  here  are  another example of a Chinese artist’s rearrangement of figures taken from prints but put into a new context. The designs here of seated ladies and small children are reminiscent of some images of the Virgin Mary with the infant Jesus and  John  the  Baptist  -  a  popular  subject  in  Western religious  art.  Here  any  religious  connotation  has disappeared and, strangely, one of the ladies is apparently offering a snake to a child.



Pair of Ruby Back Saucer Dishes Qianlong period 1736-95 Chinese or Western market Diameter: 6 inches; 15 cm  A pair of small Chinese painted enamel on copper saucer dishes, the front with a scene of the goddess Magu with the peaches of immortality and an attendant, the back painted with peaches and a deep pink to the rim. These sweet dishes are imitating the ruby back eggshell porcelains with a rich ruby enamel on the reverse made  in  the  Yongzheng  period  and  highly  prized  by collectors in the East and the West. Magu  was  a  Chinese  goddess  linked  to  the Elixir  of  Life,  who  assisted  with  the  peach  banquet, bringing the peaches to Hsi Wang Mu to give to the eight immortals to replenish their immortality. The peaches on the reverse of this dish fit with the design on the front. Magu is a popular subject in Chinese art in the eighteenth century and is associated with the cannabis plant. She is sometimes called the ‘hemp maiden’.

I am very glad to hear that the Gardener has saved so much of the St. foin seed, and that of the India Hemp. Make the most you can of both, by sowing them again in drills. [...] The Hemp may be sown any where. George Washington  writing to William Pearce, 24 Feb 1794



Hu Vase Qianlong period (1736-96) Chinese Market Height: 11 inches; 28cm A  Chinese  porcelain  hu-form  vase  decorated  in underglaze  copper  red  with  stylised  bats,  peaches  and scrolling foliage, the shoulder with a band of ruyi, the handles modelled as bats. This vase is of exceptional quality that indicates it was made in the Imperial workshops for the Imperial court. The  underglaze  copper-red  colouring  was difficult to use as it relied on small colloids of red copper dissolving  out  into  the  overglaze.  The  process  was sensitive to temperature, kiln atmosphere, cooling regime and glaze composition: it required a fluid glaze for the colloids to emerge - but too fluid and the colour diffused widely losing definition and often leaving a green tinge at the edges.  The use of copper-arsenic sulphides was first developed in the early 14th century in the Yuan Dynasty but was quickly eclipsed by the use of the cobalt blue, which  was  much  easier  to  work  with.  Copper-red  was developed further in the Ming period but it was always difficult to obtain a good colour. In the early Qing period the copper-arsenic-sulphides were replaced by oxidised leaded-bronze-lime pigments that had been used initially for the peach bloom glazes in some Kangxi wares.

I cannot bat, cannot bowl and cannot hold a catch. My only merit as a cricketer is that I can remain cheerful when it’s raining. Sir John Squire (1884-1958) in reply to an invitation from Alec Waugh (1898-1981) to play cricket in 1923



Pair of Vases & Covers Yongzheng period circa 1730 European Market Height: 23½ inches; 60cm A very fine pair of Chinese export porcelain vases of  ovoid  form,  with  domed  knopped  covers, painted in famille rose enamels with roosters and rocks surrounded by peonies. This  pair  is  an  example  of  the  best decoration  of  this  period,  finely  detailed  and with skillful use of space and colour.



Set of Three Vases & Covers Yongzheng/Qianlong period circa 1735 European Market Height: 23½ inches; 60cm A  very  fine  set  of  three  Chinese  export porcelain  vases  of  ovoid  form,  with  domed knopped covers, brightly painted in famille rose enamels with vases of flowers.



Pair Vases & Covers Qianlong period circa 1740 European Market Height: 26 inches; 66cm A very fine pair of Chinese export porcelain vases of baluster form, with domed knopped covers, brightly painted in famille rose enamels with  panels  of  birds  and  flowers,  the  knops painted as lotus buds.



Pair Vases & Covers Qianlong period circa 1740 European Market Height: 24½ inches; 62cm A very fine pair of Chinese export porcelain vases of baluster form and of octagonal section, with domed knopped covers, brightly painted in  famille rose enamels  with  panels  of landscapes, birds and flowers.



Massive Charger Yongzheng/Qianlong 1735-40 European Market Diameter: 21½ inches; 52cm A massive Chinese export porcelain famille rose charger, decorated with flowers and a black bird, probably a myna. This large dish is finely painted and shows a myna bird. These birds are species of starling and this one looks to be a Crested Myna (Acridotheres cristatellus, L. 1758), which has a pale beak, orange eyes, a thin white flash on the forewing and a white tip to the tail, as well as  a  distinctive  crest  above  the  bill.  Its  distribution  is across South east China. Mynas (ma mi niao) were popular cage birds in China  and  have  the  ability  to  mimic  sounds,  often repeating words. They are intelligent and appear in some Chinese folktales, including one from the Han, in which a myna belonging to an artist gains revenge upon a local magistrate who unfairly treats its master.  In the Ming era they often symbolised freedom and  independence  of  thought.  A  painting  by  Bada Shanren (c.1626-1705) has the inscription: “The Myna bird understands the language of man and does not care whether the wind blows or the sun shines.”

I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will. Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre


Crested Myna  (Acridotheres cristatellus, L. 1758)


Massive Charger Qianlong period circa 1740 European  Market Diameter: 21½ inches; 52cm A massive Chinese export porcelain famille rose charger, decorated with flowers and a pair of Mandarin ducks symbolising marital fidelity. This large dish, a possible companion piece to the previous item, shows a pair of Mandarin ducks (Aix galericulata L. 1758). These have been popular symbols in Chinese  art  for  centuries.  Here  the  male  is  in  fine plumage and the female in brown. Because the Mandarin duck is believed to mate for life, unlike the promiscuous mallard, it has long stood for the strong bond between lovers or man and wife; a ‘mandarin-duck dream’ is a romantic  dream  or  dream-like  interlude  and  was  the name  of  a  famous  Ming  drama,  Ye  Xiaowan’s  (1630– 1660) Dream of Mandarin Ducks (Yuanyang meng). These  ducks  are  tough  and  adapt  well  to captivity  and  were  among  the  first  exotic  bird  species brought back from China that were successfully kept in European aviaries, prized for their exotic plumage. They were brought to Britain in the first half of the eighteenth century  and  a  wild  population  has  now    become established in the south of England.  The  first  drawing  of  a  Mandarin  duck  in Britain was in 1745 by George Edwards (1694-1773) in the gardens of Sir Matthew Decker in Richmond Green, Surrey.


A Natural History of Uncommon Birds and of Some Other Rare and Undescribed Animals,  London, 1743-64 by George Edwards (1694-1773)

‘From a pair of these birds, in Mr Beale's aviary at Macao, the drake happened one night to be stolen. The duck was perfectly inconsolable, like Calypso after the departure of Ulysses. She retired into a corner, neglected her food and person, refused all society, and rejected with disdain the proffer of a second love. In a few days the purloined drake was recovered and brought back. The mutual demonstrations of joy were excessive; and what is more singular, the true husband, as if informed by his partner of what had happened in his absence, pounced upon the would-be lover, tore out his eyes and injured him so much that he soon after died of his wounds.’ So  reported  a  youthful  Sir  John  Davis (1795–1890) in 1813, when he was a writer with the EEIC in Canton. Thirty years later, he would have a controversial four-year tenure as the second governor of  Hong  Kong.  Thomas  Beale  (1775–1841),  a  rich opium dealer, had a huge aviary and plant collection in Macao.

Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux, 1770 by George Louis Leclerc Buffon (1707-1788)  with engravings by  François Nicolas Martinet (1725-1804)

Portraits of Rare and Curious Birds and their Descriptions from the Menagery of Osterley Park, 1794,  by William Hayes


Pair Vases & Covers Yongzheng period circa 1735 European Market Height: 36 inches; 90cm A  very  fine  pair  of  large  Chinese  export porcelain vases of baluster form, with domed covers, brightly painted in famille rose enamels with panels of phoenix and flowers, the knops as Dogs of Fo.



Pair Vases & Covers Yongzheng period circa 1735 European Market Height: 36 inches; 90cm A very fine pair of Chinese export porcelain vases  of  baluster  form,  with  domed  covers, brightly  painted  in  famille rose enamels  with panels of domestic scenes reserved on a ground of flowers on black, the knops as Dogs of Fo.



Fish Tank Qianlong period circa 1750 European Market Diameter: 24 inches; 61 cm A Chinese export porcelain fishtank, of globular form with everted rim, decorated in famille rose enamels with pairs of birds including Chinese phoenix (fenghuang) and cranes, with unglazed lion mask handles holding metal rings.


The fish are put in a deep large bason, at the bottom of which they frequently put an earthen pan turned upside down with hole in it that in the heat of the day they may have shelter from the sun. Besides the little balls of paste which they are fed with, they give them the yolk of a boiled egg, lean pork dried in the sun and reduced to a very fine powder. They are much hurt and sometimes killed by a great noise, like that of guns or thunder... The Chinese Traveller, 1772



Pair of Winecoolers Qianlong  period circa 1760-70 European Market Height: 9 inches; 23cm A fine pair of Chinese export porcelain winecoolers of moulded silver-form with rococo handles, decorated in famille rose enamels with flowers, the foot with a spearhead border.



Pair of Winecoolers Qianlong  period circa 1760-70 European Market Height: 8½ inches; 22cm A  pair  of  Chinese  export  porcelain  winecoolers  of moulded  silver-form  with  loop  handles,  decorated  in famille rose enamels with flowers. References: Mézin 2002, p75, No 58, a famille rose pair of the same size and form but different flowers, in the Musée de Lorient; Brawer 1992, p145, a single blue and white example; Huitfeldt 1993, p66, a single in famille rose; Cohen & Cohen, 2008, No 31, a similar pair.

Clever tyrants are never punished.

Voltaire,  Mérope, act V, scene V (1743)



Massive Christening Bowl Qianlong period circa 1740 Diameter: 21½  inches; 54.6 cm A Chinese export christening bowl brightly painted in famille rose with panels of peonies and rocks reserved on four layers of lotus petals in pink, blue, purple and green. References: Cohen & Cohen 2007, a similar bowl.




Pair of Tureens, Covers & Stands Qianlong period circa 1770 Portuguese Market Stand length: 13¾ ins, 35cm A  pair  of  Chinese  export  porcelain  rococo  scroll  end tureens,  covers  and  stands  decorated  in  famille rose enamels with floral sprays. The  shape  is  taken  from  a  Wedgewood creamware original made in the late 18th century. This shape is found in three sizes, with these being the rarest. Some larger examples are known, including one large coral red example formerly in the Mottahedeh collection, and smaller examples are known, including examples as sauce tureens in some Portuguese armorial services. References: Cohen & Cohen 2001, No 48, the large coral red tureen from the Mottahedeh collection; Howard & Ayers 1978, p555, No 573, the large coral ground tureen; Beurdeley 1962, p71,  plate  XV,  a  sauce  tureen  with  the  arms  of  Pedro  II  of Portugal;  Castro  1988,  p138,  sauce  tureen  with  the  arms  of Sibral; Wirgin 1998, p106, No 108, sauce tureen with bright enamelling;  Cohen  &  Cohen  2005,  No  23,  this  pair;  Le Corbeiller & freylinghuysen 2003, p35, No 34,  an armorial sauce tureen, No 35 a Wedgewood original; Antunes 2000, p64, No 48, pair of sauce tureens with spoons.

late 18th century Wedgewood creamware turee.

Now that my ladder's gone I must lie down where all the ladders start In the foul rag and bone shop of the heart. WB Yeats



Pair of Candle Snuffer Holders Qianlong period circa 1750 French Market Height: 6¾ inches; 17cm

Under the last dead lamp When all the dancers and masks had gone inside His cold stare Returned to its true task, interrogation of silence. George Mackay Brown

An extremely rare pair of Chinese export porcelain candle snuffer holders, of rococo form after European originals, the holder resembling an inflorescence with coloured bracts and foliate tendrils forming a handle, the bases in the form of a vine leaf resting on a rectangular plinth. This extraordinary pair of of snuffer holders is very rare - another pair and a single are the only others recorded. They appear to be copying a rococo form, probably originally moulded in French faïence or silver, though the source has not been found. The plinth base is similar to that of some figures but the leaf and cup form is otherwise unkown. Candle snuffer holders were mainly made in brass or silver and held the special scissors or snips that were used to trim the candlewick as the candle burnt down. The finer sets  of  candlesticks  would  often  be  accompanied  by  a matching snuffer holder, which had the rectangular aperture and a deep recess on one side of that, to fit the trimmers. References: Beurdeley 1962, p170, Cat. 96, a single example from the Roger Boutemy Collection, Paris; Marchant 2015, a pair; Krahl & Harrison-Hall 1994, No 84, a Chinese porcelain snuffer holder of different form, in the British Museum.


18th century brass candlesnuffer and holder.


Covered Tankard Qianlong period circa 1740 European Market Height: 8½ inches; 21cm A rare Chinese export porcelain tankard, brightly decorated in famille rose enamels with animals and flowers, the handle in pale blue. This has some similarity to a small group of  covered  ewers  of  the  period  but  this  form  is unusual. Provenance: the  Popowich  collection,  formerly with Cohen & Cohen References: Cohen  &  Cohen  2015,  No  43  a  larger example of this form with metal mounts.

Oh, what a tangled web do parents weave when they think that their children are naive. Ogden Nash



with a revived taste for chinoiserie and Chinese porcelain.

Garniture Qianlong period circa 1740 European market Height: 14 inches; 36cm A  Chinese  export  porcelain  five-piece  garniture  finely painted in famille rose enamels with ladies and children beneath prunus and peony issuing from rockwork in a fenced garden. Five piece garniture sets were very popular in Europe at this date and designs for furniture, fireplaces and room panelling allowed for this with brackets and niches  for  the  display  of  such  sets.  Many  such  arrays followed  the  designs  of  Daniel  Marot    (1661-1752)  a French Huguenot designer and engraver who moved to Holland  after  the  Revocation  of  the  Edict  of  Nantes (1685)  and  later  to  England  with  William  and  Mary, introducing  the  court  style  of  Louis  XIV  to  both countries.  One  of  his  designs  for  a  chimney  piece included spaces for 300 pieces of porcelain. This  fashion  was  further  added  to  with  the publication in 1755 of Jean-Baptiste Pillement’s designs of  Chinese  Ornament,  published  after  his  arrival  in London from Lisbon, that combined the ‘high rococo’


detail of engraving by Marot, c 1690-1700


Garniture Qianlong period circa 1750 European Market Height: 11 inches; 28cm A Chinese export porcelain five piece garniture of lobed and ribbed forms, painted in famille rose enamels with peony and prunus. This  elegant  garniture  demonstrates  the inventiveness and sophistication of the design of such pieces, the elaborate shapes interacting with each other to produce such a visually entertaining effect.

Like dear St Francis of Assisi I am wedded to poverty: but in my case the marriage is not a success. Oscar Wilde, 1899



Charger Kangxi period circa 1699 Italian Market Diameter: 16 inches; 41cm A very large Chinese blue and white armorial charger with the arms of Ginori at the rim and borders of foliage copied from Delft, the base with lingzhi fungus inside a double circle Castro  (1989)  had  originally  ascribed  this service  to  Caldeira  but  he  adds  the  now  accepted attribution to  Lorenzo Ginori, an Italian in Lisbon who ordered this service through the Portuguese East India Company - and the design is almost identical to a service with the Portuguese arms of Coelho, and a dish with the arms of da Costa. Examples are known from the service with the arms in the centre or at the rim as in this very large example. The  Ginori  family  was  originally  from Calenzano but moved to Florence in the 13th century becoming  wealthy  and  significant  members  of  the Republic.  They  flourished  in  the  wool  trade  and extended their family network across Europe. Lorenzo was the son of senator Carlo Ginori of  Florence  and  Fiammetta  Oricellari  and  he  went  to Lisbon in 1668 and was appointed Tuscan consul in 1676 by  Cosimo  III  de  Medici.  His  brother  Francesco  was made  Tuscan  consul  in  Cadiz,  another  brother Bartolomeo  was  made  Danish  consul  in  Seville  and youngest  brother  Niccolo  took  over  from  Lorenzo  in Lisbon before 1688.  Lorenzo  built  up  contacts  in  global  trade especially in Goa and Macao, from which he supplied Cosimo III with 'curiosities from the Indies' including Chinese  porcelain  (Chinese  porcelain  is  recorded  in Florence  as  early  as  1463)  and  Lorenzo  himself  had  a noted porcelain collection when he returned to Italy and became Provveditore in the Custom House at Livorno, circa 1689. In the late 1690s Cosimo III commissioned an elaborate altar piece for the Jesuit Church in Goa. The pieces  were  made  in  Tuscany  and  were  shipped  from Livorno, and the arrangements for shipping, including passage of two engineers from Tuscany to Goa via Lisbon, were overseen by another of Lorenzo's brothers, Giovan


Francesco  (1668-1731)  in  Lisbon.  The  order  for  this service almost certainly went with them, along with the orders for the Coelho and da Costa services. Among the Ginori archives is a document showing that the service arrived in Livorno from Goa on 31 March 1699, in time for Lorenzo's marriage to Ann Maria Minerbetti. They lived  in  Palazzo  Ginori  in  Via  de'  Ginori  in  Florence which  was  substantially  redecorated  at  this  time  and where this porcelain would have been shown. The family interest in ceramics continued as Lorenzo's son Carlo Andrea founded the Manifattura Ginori in Doccia. References: Le Corbeiller 1974, p34, an example with the arms in the

rim; Castro 1989, p43, a plate; Ginori Lisci & Listri 1988, Il Servito Ginori;

Sargent 2012, p357, a plate;  Antonella Alimento, ed. 2011, War, Trade and Neutrality: Europe and the Mediterranean in the Seventeenth and Eighteen

Centuries, pp59-67; Viola, Antonella 2014, Trade and Diplomacy: the Ginori family’s trading network in the Iberian Peninsula (1660-1700); Alves et al 1998,

p206-9, three similar items.

cartouche on Palazzo Ginori in Florence.

arms of Ginori

41 Dinner Plate Kangxi period circa 1700 Portuguese Market Diameter: 8½ inches (21.5cm)  A very rare Chinese export porcelain small dinner plate decorated  in  underglaze  blue  with  a  central  armorial shield,  surrounded  by  scrolling  vine  with  clusters  of grapes,  the  cavetto  with  floral  reserves  and chrysanthemums on a swastika trellis ground.  These arms have been identified as those of Pedro (or Pero) Vaz Soares Bacelar, Fidalgo da Casa de Sua  Magestade,  born  circa  1645,  the  son  of  Duarte Claudio Huet and Constança Malheiro Pereira Bacelar Sotomaior.  Constança  was  the  daughter  of  Marcos Malheiro  Pereira  Bacelar  &  Helena  de  Meireles Sotomaior.  Marcos was Knight of the Order of Christ and General of the Minho army and was also significantly involved in paper manufacture in the city of Braga. Pedro was probably named after his 4 x great uncle, Pedro Vaz Bacelar who became Friar Geronimo. Pedro had at least one brother Antonio. Pedro was an Infantry Captain and adventurer in  India  and  seems  to  have  travelled  widely  in  the Portuguese colonies, becoming Governor of Mombasa Fort. In 1701 he is listed as a captain in Fort Bassein (Baçaim), a dependency of Goa in western India. He married Maria Cyrne (her third marriage she had first married Rodrigues Garcia de Tavora in India and then Roque Pacheco Corte-Real). They had one son recorded,  Carlos  Vaz  Cyrne  Bacellar,  who  is  listed  as Fidalgo Cavalleiro, por Alvará, in 1697, and who died without issue.  A few plates with these arms are also recorded painted in rouge de fer and gilt. It is very unusual to have a service rendered in two colours like this and it remains possible that they were ordered at different times. The use  of  scrolling  vine  in  the  decoration  is  a  feature  of porcelain made for the Portuguese Market in this period.  The arms here are loosely drawn and the crest has become a deer rather than a lion or leopard with a vine leaf on its head. The animal is also facing the 'wrong' direction as the convention for crests is to face the other way. However this suggests that the Chinese artists were


presented with a seal fob or signet ring to copy - and this, of course, would have the crest reversed so a wax imprint would then be correct. Such a small item might also be difficult to read and could explain the demi-lion with a vine leaf on its forehead (something unfamiliar to the Chinese) being interpreted as a deer.  Another  member  of  the  family  was  Manuel Pereira  Bacelar,  Governor  of  Vila  Nova  de  Cerveira  e Monção, in the late 17th century, who lived at Casa do Carboal, which has his coat of arms on the exterior and over the entrance gate. References: Castro 2007, p107, the blue and white plate with attribution of these arms; Felgueiras Gayo Carvalhos de Basto

1989 (originally 1938), Nobiliário das Famílias de Portugal, Braga,

2nd Edition, Vol II, p357, genealogy of this family;  Diccionario

Aristocratico (Fidalgos de Casa Real), 1840, p378, lists Pedro as


stone armorial shields at Casa do Carboal

arms of Bacellares Famílias Ilustres de Portugal


Pair of Armorial Monteiths Yongzheng period circa 1735 Portuguese Market Height: 12 inches; 30cm


A  very  fine  pair  of  Chinese  export  porcelain  armorial monteiths with a Portuguese coat of arms, the body with extensive  anhua incised  decoration  of  lotus  and  other flowers.


The  quartered  arms  are:  Periera,  Pinto,  Guedes  and Pimentel.  Pereira:  the  cross  in  the  Pereira  arms commemorates Saint Nuno Álvares Pereira (1360-1431) The arms are for Cosme Damião Pinto Pereira, Fidalgo of the Royal Household, Lord of the Quinta do Vale dos Moinhos and Quinta das Conchas in Lumiar, Lisbon. He was Captain-General and Governor of Macao for two periods,  1733-1735 and 1743-1747. He ordered several services, all of which appear to have this anhua incised decoration but some later ones have  additional  famille rose sprays  of  flowers.  These monteiths are from the earliest service. Provenance: collection of Florentina (Cuqui) Fierro Viña in the Plaza de Marqués Salamanca. References: Castro 1988, p78-9, details of this service;  Ibid p 67, a monteith with the Royal arms of Portugal, the same crenellation but a different body shape.


Dinner Plate Qianlong period circa 1750 European Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm A Chinese export porcelain dinner plate painted en grisaille and gilt with a central monogramme framed by a baroque canopy, drapes and floral swags, the rim with a du Paquier style border.

It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into. attr. Jonathan Swift


This is a very finely painted example of this ‘pseudo-armorial’ type. It is almost certainly made for a marriage as the monogramme contains quite a few letters entwined and the canopy suggests a bed, with two  billing  doves  below.  Designs  like  this  were frequently used as framing devices for vignettes and title page panels in books of the early 18th century, notably by the printmaker Bernard Picart.

44 Pair of Chargers Qianlong period circa 1745-55 Italian or Dutch Market Diameter: 14 inches; 28cm A  pair  of  Chinese  armorial  chargers  with  a  central armorial  medallion,  the  rim  brightly  enamelled  with scrolling designs, the edge lobed. These striking chargers belong to one of the small number of memorable designs that are sought after by collectors of armorial porcelain - especially as they are very rare. The arms in the centre are for the Paravicini di Capelli familly originally from Lombardy in Italy but by the  eighteenth  century  there  were  branches  in Switzerland, Spain, The Netherlands and England. These were probably ordered by a member of the Dutch branch, who had moved to Holland from the Swiss district of Glarus. Several of the Dutch family were notable in the military and spent time in the Dutch colonies, which would  have  provided  the  opportunity  to  order  such porcelains. One such was Elais Paravicini who was an artillary commander in Ceylon. Kroes 2007 suggests that these chargers were ordered by Johannes Andreas Paravicini di Capelli (17101771) who was born in Barcelona to a Captain in the Spanish army and Maria Ellenburger from Altenburg, Saxony. At the age of fourteen he left home and went to Amsterdam to join the VOC as a soldier.  He  was  in  Ceylon  in  1740  and  appeared  in Batavia  working  as  an  independent  middleman  from 1746-9  after  which  he  rejoined  the  VOC  as  a commissioner, becoming Harbour Master in 1754  and a senior  merchant.  He  went  to  Timor  in  1756  on  a diplomatic mission resulting in the Paravicini Treaty, an alliance between the VOC and a group of 48 chieftains against the Portuguese. He returned to Holland in 1759 and  was  married  in  1766  to  Marianne  de  Lambert, daughter of a Prussian captain. He died in 1771 a very wealthy man but without heirs. Johannes wrote extensive diaries and during his time in Timor he described being presented with two severed heads by a chieftain ‘with deep reverence and a dignified  speech’  and  how  the  warriors  put  peacock feathers  in  their  hair  and  danced  around  the  heads impaled on long poles.


I am like a tree, From my top boughs I can see The footprints that led up to me. RS Thomas

a banquet arranged by Paravicini in Timor 1756 (TroopenMuseum, Amsterdam) References: Hervouët & Bruneau 1986, p335, No 14.33, a plate; Kroes 2007, p313-4, Cat 230 with much information about the family; Hägerdal, Hans 2012, Lords of the Land, Lords of the Sea: Conflict and Adaptation in Early Colonial Timor, 1600-1800; Mézin 2002, p166, No 137, a plate;  Beurdeley 1962, fig. 82, p119.


Charger Qianlong period circa 1750-55 Dutch Market Diameter: 17 inches; 43cm A Chinese export porcelain armorial charger decorated with  the  Dutch  arms  of  Tulleken  and  inscribed  R. Tulleken, within an elaborate shell and scroll rococo border. Despite the inscription it is not immediately clear who might have ordered this. The Tulleken family is ancient and branches are in Arnhem, Middelburg and ’s-Hertogenbosch; members of the Middelburg branch ordered an earlier service, circa 1730. Kroes 2007, suggests that this was ordered by Rutger  Tulleken  (1702-1750)  of  the  ’s-Hertogenbosch branch, whose father and son were also called Rutger. He was a captain in the Oranje-Friesland Regiment and was based in Emden towards the end of his life. Kroes suggests that this may have been ordered through the shortlived Emden East India Company, possibly as a memorial for Rutger. In about 1740 he married Catharina Bleker (died after 1775) and his elder son Rutger was born in 1741. There is a possible portrait of Rutger by Bernard Accama in the Fries Museum, Leeuwarden.  References: Kroes 2007, p326, this service; p148, another service circa 1730 with the same arms; Cohen & Cohen 2001, p25,  No 21, famille rose charger c 1730; Cohen & Cohen 2005, No 9, another charger with RTulleken.

A Captain in the Oranje-Friesland Regiment, painted 1731, by Bernardus Accama, the sitter possibly Rutger Tulleken.


So far as I can see, all political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell London Letter (December 1944),  in Partisan Review (Winter 1945)


Pair of Sauce Tureens, Covers & Stands Qianlong period circa 1763 Dutch Market Length of Stands: 7¾ inches; 19.5cm A  pair  of  Chinese  export  porcelain  armorial  sauce tureens, covers and stands of moulded and gadrooned form  copying  a  Leeds  creamware  original,  painted  in famille rose enamels with two Dutch coats of arms accollée, the cavetto with a chain border and the rim with sprays of flowers. The Dutch arms are of Nauta and Swalue of Friesland. This service was made for the marriage in 1763 of  Paulus  Rombertus  Nauta-Bueckens  (1737-1789),  a successful  wine  merchant,  and  Hester  Josina  Swalue (1746-1812). Paulus was the son of Gijsbertus Nauta and Geertruida Bueckens, daughter of Marius Bueckens and Gerritje  Sierxma,  married  in  1696.  Hester  was  the daughter  of  Dr  Otto  Swalue,  a  lawyer,  and    Belitie Bueckens,  also  the  daughter  of  Marius  Bueckens  and Gerritje Sierxma. So Paulus and Hester were first cousins, their mothers being sisters.  Paulus  built  a  large  house  at  Sondel, Gaasterland, called Bueckenswijk, about 1780, that was demolished and rebuilt in the later 19th century. The new house incorporated an armorial carved tablet from the old house, with these arms on it. The dinner service was fairly large, about 160 pieces, and is well dispersed, most having been sold in 1904 in Amsterdam. The shapes are elaborate and copied from various ceramic sources. The salts are after Meissen footed shell forms and the tureens copy Leeds creamware originals. For a long time the arms had been attributed to Del Chieff of Liege, an error corrected by Dr Joachem Kroes.

wall tablet from Bueckenswijk House, the home of Paulus and Hester. Their arms are in the centre.

creamware tureen of similar shape, probably Leeds, mid to late 18th century.

References: Arapova et al. 2003, a basin; Shimizu & Chabanne 2003,  p231,  Cat  186,  a  dinner  plate;  Kroes  2007,  p463,  an interesting and detailed account of this service and the family.

No matter how I go, I want it reported that I drowned in moonlight, strangled by my own bra. Carrie Fisher



Dinner Plate Qianlong period circa 1745 English Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm A Chinese export armorial porcelain dinner plate with a central coat of arms en grisaille, the rim with panels of harbour views in famille rose. The  arms  are  for  the  Coopers’  Company (simplified): Gyronny of eight gules and sable on a chevron between three annulets or a grose between two adzes azure; on a chief vert three lillies slipped and leved argent. Crest: A demi heathcock with wings expanded azure powdered with annulets or, in the beak a lily argent. Supporters:  Two camels gules bridled or powdered with annulets of the last. Arms granted in 1501 Howard  2003,  lists  31  different  livery companies with arms found on Chinese export porcelain but  only  three  are  known  in  this  style,  with  the  two vignettes on the rim showing Portsmouth Harbour and Whampoa and the grisaille central arms. The others are the Poulterers’ and the Fishmongers’. The Worshipful Company of Coopers is one of the oldest livery companies of London, founded some time in the thirteenth century and given a Royal Charter in 1501. It was a trade group representing the makers of wooden  casks  for  the  wine,  beer  and  spirit  trades.  Its motto is ‘Love As Brethren’. The  cooper  trade  was  important  in  the medieval and early modern periods. An image of a cooper making a cask is recorded in famille rose on a Chinese export porcelain teaservice, using an image taken from Jan Luyken’s book of Professions.

As the vilest writer hath his readers, so the greatest liar hath his believers: and it often happens, that if a lie be believed only for an hour, it hath done its work. Jonathan Swift Essay upon the Art of Political Lying, 1710

References: Howard 1974, Vol 1, p329, this service. detail of Chinese saucer, circa 1760 (left) and detail of a print circa 1705 by Jan Luyken from his ‘Professions’ series, showing a cooper at work. It is clearly the inspiration for this but the design has been altered and added to. Three others from this series are also known on export porcelain, all with some modification like here.



Teabowl and Saucer Qianlong period circa 1739 Dutch Market Diameter of Saucer: 4 inches; 10cm  A  Chinese  export  porcelain  teabowl  and  saucer  painted  in underglaze blue with the Dame au Parasol pattern after Cornelis Pronk.  This is probably from the last order for this pattern, brought to Amsterdam in 1739 on the Hogensmilde. The pattern has been simplified for a small object and the cell border lacks the figural and bird cartouches.  The central scene is known as La Dame au Parasol and is  after  a  design  by  the  Dutch  artist  Cornelis  Pronk, commissioned by the Dutch East India Company in 1734. It was the first design by Pronk sent to China, the porcelain returning on the ship Magdalena via Batavia  and arriving in Amsterdam in Spring 1737. The design is also known in Chinese Imari and famille rose.  The  original  drawing  by  Pronk  survives  in  the Rijksmuseum. The  Pronk  porcelain  enterprise  was  an  ambitious venture  by  the  VOC  to  create  high  quality,  exciting  new porcelains  in  China  to  specific  European  designs  that  were aimed at the current fashions in the market. Initially the VOC asked the Delft workshops to produce coloured ceramic models that  could  be  taken  to  China,  but  they  replied  that  the polychrome was too difficult and so the VOC commissioned Cornelis  Pronk  (1691-1759)  to  make  drawings  instead.  He worked for three and a half years from the middle of 1734 to the end of 1737 and produced four drawings, one per year for which he was paid 1200 guilders per year.  The designs were copied and sent to Batavia from where the enterprise seems to have been coordinated. The first design, La Dame au Parasol, was sent on to Canton, and also to Deshima  in  Japan  where  samples  in  blue  and  white  and polychrome were made (a few of both exist) but no full orders given.  The  Canton  orders  were  delayed  at  first,  both  by  the weather and also the caution of the merchants as the Chinese dealers were demanding very high prices for the production of such a complicated pattern. Also the basins for the cistern and basin sets were not surviving in the kiln. Two  documented  shipments  of  the  first  design (Parasol) returned to Amsterdam: (see Jörg 1980, p20-21): 1. Magdalena, (arrived in Amsterdam March 1737) - 3 Dinner services;  10  teaservices;  9  vases  &  basins;  19  mantlesets (garnitures) 2.  Hogensmilde (arrived  in  Amsterdam  1739)  with  porcelains ordered from dealer Tan Suqua in Canton, Jan 1738) - 5 dinner


services; 5 teaservices; 10 vases and basins (5 big & 5 small) The original orders for these had been much larger but the cost had brought about the reduction.  After  the  official  VOC  ‘pronk’  venture  ceased  to operate, the designs remained with the Chinese workshops and examples continued to be made sporadically, including some later services around 1760-70. The design was also copied on various  European  ceramics  including    Cozzi,  and  English stoneware in the 19th century.  The central image of an attendant holding  a parasol over another figure was widely used in Western art to signify hot climates, the East and an exotic setting and appears in many prints from books about China. One significant book was an account of China by Olfert Dapper (1635- 1689), with images by Jacob Van Meurs  (1620-1680). These were re-engraved by Bernad Picart around 1730, when Pronk might have seen them. One large double image of Chinese Pagodas has a detail that is very similar to the Parosol group. Interestingly this same print also includes a small seated figure close to that found on the ‘potentate’ pattern attributed to the Pronk workshop.

1730 print by Bernard Picart, after Jacob van Meurs, two details below (Author’s collection)

figure from ‘potentate’ cistern


Vase Qianlong period circa 1740 Dutch Market Height: 12 inches; 30cm A  rare  square-form  baluster  vase  from  the  ‘Pronk’ workshop, decorated with flowers and foliage against a lilac ground. The  form  is  taken  from  Chinese  archaistic bronzes, though it is rare in Chinese export porcelain and most examples seem connected to the Pronk workshop. This would have been part of a five piece garniture, for a full example of this type see Cohen & Cohen 2013, No 43. The  VOC  orders  connected  to  the  ‘Pronk’ venture contain quite a few for garniture sets. Some of these  are  known  with  The  Doctor’s  Visit  design,  but several  others  have  designs  only  attributed  to  the workshop rather than to designs by Pronk himself. They may indeed have been by him but could also be the work of another artist involved in the venture. There are five known garniture designs of this type, all having the same square-section vases and beakers, which are found in shorter fatter versions or, as in this set, tall and thin. There are other small variations in the shape, the width of the foot, and some have small covers on the baluster vases, though this tall thin type seems not to have required them. Also recorded are some smaller examples  with the ‘vine/fox-grape’ design. The five designs are ‘fritillary’, this one which is  ‘dewberry’,  ‘redcurrant’,  ‘vine  or  fox-grape’  and ‘Auricula’ (see the next items in this catalogue). A few examples of the baluster vase are recorded with ordinary famille rose peony design (see Cohen & Cohen 2015, No 77)  but all are very rare. These designs appear to have been inspired by the prints of Maria Sybille Merian using elements from her books on European insects and flowers (Erucarum Ortus - a Dutch edition of 1730 combined 180 of these plates previously published in smaller groups). They have been developed to fit the vases. The ‘redcurrant’ design is clearly taken from a Merian print (plate CXXXI, 1730 ed.), having a distinctive leaf and other elements, and this ‘dewberry’ design seems similar to another print (plate CXXII) from the same series. Elements from these prints


were also used on other porcelains from the workshops that made porcelains to the designs of Cornelis Pronk so it is reasonable to assume that all these garnitures were made  in  the  ‘Pronk’  workshop  in  China,  using  the Merian prints among others. There are also similarities in the colours and ground patterns.  The redcurrant design closely follows elements of  one  print  plate  CXXXI  (1730  edition)  and  also includes  two  moths  from  pl  CXLII,  and  the  fritillary design  takes  details  from  several  prints  as  well  as including two elements from the Pronk Arbour pattern, the  foot  rim  pattern  and  a  side  view  of  the  Cinnabar moth.  The  dewberry  possibly  takes  elements  of  pl CXXII but it has been significantly reworked. The  designs  on  all  vases  have  been  cleverly inverted for the beaker vases. This may have been done by Pronk himself but more likely by a talented supercargo or overseer for the Pronk orders who was extending the range of porcelains in the workshop. This same artist may have  been  responsible  for  the  palmette  design  which reworks parts of the Arbour pattern. References:  Wirgin  1999,  p  175,  the  ‘redcurrant’  garniture; Sargent 2012, p289, a pair of the baluster vases of the dewberry pattern; a single was sold in January 2012 from the collection of Peter H B Frelinghuysen Jr; Buerdeley & Raindre 1986, No 145, a set of four; Antiques, May 1982, this garniture; Cohen & Cohen 2012, p37, No 22, the ‘fritillary’ garniture; C&C. 2013, No 43, a ‘dewberry’ garniture; a single beaker vase with the dewberry pattern is in the British Museum, No 1963,0422.9 from Mrs Nellie Ionides.


Three Piece Garniture Qianlong period circa 1740 Dutch Market Height: 12¼ inches; 31cm A  very  rare  Chinese  export  porcelain  three-piece garniture, of square-form, decorated with leaves and red berries on a black ground, the foot rim with acanthus leaf border.

dewberry, plate CXXII

This  design  has  been  called  the  ‘vine  or foxgrape’. It closely resembles the ‘redcurrant’ design but has notable differences, lacking the distinctive leaf and the two moths. It may however be an attempt to simplify the ‘redcurrant’ design to reduce costs - it has the same foot rim design and the black ground. The berries are closer to the foxgrape but the leaves resemble those of a vine  and  the  design  lacks  the  coiled  tendrils  of  the foxgrape. This design is also known in small vases, 22cm high,  with  simpler  drawing  and  colouring,  using underglaze blue and polychrome.

foxgrape, plate CVI

Reference: Wirgin 1999, p 175, the ‘redcurrant’ garniture.

redcurrant, plate CXXXI







foxgrape small


Pair of Vases Qianlong period circa 1740 Dutch Market Height: 12 inches; 30cm A pair of Chinese export porcelain square-form baluster vases  painted  with  a  rush  or  sedge  and  a  birds-eye primrose (Auricula) on a yellow ground, the foot rim with a distinctive pink cell diaper. This exteremly rare pair of vases seems to fit within the group of porcelains attributed to the designs of Cornelis Pronk and the ‘Pronk workshop’. The pink border to the foot is unusual and similar to other Pronk porcelains. One beaker vase from an auction in 1999 and these two vases are the only examples of this type and colour  known.  These  two  vases  had  lost  much  of  the original  yellow  enamel  but  are  otherwise  undamaged, suggesting that this was difficult to get right in the kiln and, as the yellow enamel is expensive, the production of this design was not continued. There was enough of the original  enamel  remaining  to  enable  an  accurate restoration as seen here. Although  belonging  to  the  same  group  of garniture vases as the previous two items in the catalogue, these two floral elements are not found in the prints of Maria Sybilla Merian and their potential source prints have not been found. Reference: Christies New York, 21 January 1999, lot 61, a beaker vase of this type, but the Auricula with red petals, the only other example of this design recorded.

Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. Albert Einstein



Pair of Sconces Qianlong period circa 1740 Dutch Market Height: 19 inches; 48cm A pair of Chinese export porcelain wall sconces of elaborate baroque form  decorated  in  famille rose enamels,  the  frame  incorporating phonixes, the central image of a man in Chinese dress bearing two burning  torches,  one  held  aloft;  with  19th  century  metal candlesconces adorned with 19th century European white porcelain flowers. These  rare  sconces  belong  to  a  small  group  of  similar porcelain sconces all attributed to the Pronk workshop. This design, variously  known  as  the  ‘torch-bearer’  or  the  ‘flame-dancer’  is recorded in two versions with different frames. The other is thinner and smaller and does not include the phoenixes in the frame. The  two  other  designs  are  a  European  Phoenix  over flames, taken from a print for Aesop’s Fables by Aegidius Sadeler after Marcus Gheeraerts, known in two difference sizes and frames and a girl on a swing, which is the rarest. One other example of the same shape as the ‘girl on a swing’ is known but with Chinese figures of a sage beside a pine tree. The figure here looks to have been created to fit this space, but the inspiration is likely to be various figures in  Ceremonies and Religious Customs of Various Nations of the World, by JF Bernard and Bernard Picart. This great work was produced in Amsterdam in 172330,  with  engravings  by  Picart.  Several  of  these  show  eastern ceremonial processions with figures bearing flaming torches (for a detail of an example see right). References: Arapova et al. 2003, No 49, a flame-dancer sconce of the narrow form in the Hermitage; a pair the same as this pair is in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts (No 2006.891.1&2); Jörg 1980, p38, fig 13 a sconce like these; Howard & Ayers 1978, Vol 1, p295, a sconce like these; Cohen & Cohen 2008, No 23, the sconce with Chinese figures; C&C 2007, No 11, the smaller Phoenix sconce.

detail of print by Bernard Picart, circa 1725-30 showing a procession in Japan. (Author’s collection)


The Pronk Workshop Enterprise - an update in progress... (revising  the  summary  in  Hit & Myth,  Cohen  & Cohen catalogue 2014B, including a new numbering system that allows for additions and deletions) As well as the four designs known to be by Pronk (two for sure and two attributed) there are a number of other designs that have the distinctive style of known Pronk pieces which must have come from the same workshops.  This strongly indicates that there was an active contributor either in Amsterdam or, more likely, in Batavia, who was  creating  additional  designs  to  broaden  the  range,  also using similar source material as Pronk, including Pronk’s own designs.  The VOC records indicate that Pronk was commissioned to produce one design each year and that he worked for three and half years producing four designs.  The only drawings by Pronk (or contemporary copies of his drawings) are in the Rijksmuseum, showing the Dame au Parasol (A) and the three figures version of the Doctors' Visit (B2). Tantalisingly the sale of art and books from the estate of Pronk’s brother Aldert Pronk in 1772 lists six lots of folders of drawings of models for porcelain by Cornelis. This suggests he might have created more than four designs - or at least more variants.  An accurate list of possible 'Pronk' designs is difficult to assemble, but there are possibly as many as 20 attributable  to  the  Pronk  Workshop  Enterprise  as  a  whole,  using comparisons of styles and certain distinctive elements, and the use of shared sources in Natural History prints.  1 The Pronk Four: A Dame  au  Parasol    known  in  famille rose (FR), Imari and blue and white on dinner, tea and coffee services B1 Doctors' Visit four figures, known on all forms including cisterns and basins, bottle garnitures, in famille rose (FR) and blue and white, no Imari versions? B2 Doctors' Visit three figures - rare, tea services known, famille rose only. C Archer - cisterns and basins only, FR and blue & white (basins with roses and moths after Marie Sybille Merian); two celadon-ground vases, shaped as small cisterns, imari palette.  D The Arbour - dinner and tea services in FR and blue and white, no Imari versions? A Meissen teabowl with this pattern is in the New York Metropolitan Museum, No 64.101.165 from the Untermyer Collection, possibly Amsterdam decorated, which suggests that Pronk or the VOC may have had a European example made up as a trial. 2 Closely associated: E The Plume - tea wares, plates and large chargers, in yellow  & violet or iron red & grey; relates to D. F Insects coffee service - coffee pot, teapot and cup and saucer known, relates to D, in famille rose and blue and white. G Trumpeter - black ground - plates and tea wares.  H Flowers after Merian  - plates and dishes in FR and blue & white; a later and cruder version is known; this


design also relates to an Imperial vase, (Qianlong mark and of the period) in the Victoria and Albert Museum. I PARROTS: I1 Parrot and Spaniel overglaze blue and grisaille, teawares known - derives from Meissen design attr. P Schenck; cups are same unusual shape as G (Trumpeter), B1 (Doctors’ Visit) and F (Insects) I2 Spaniel  with  parrots  on  border  -  later  plates, roughly drawn but derived from I1 I3 Parrot  on  a  swing:  teawares  and  garnitures known in blue and white and famille rose; some examples with celadon ground as in C;  I4 Parrot on branch: FR garniture, very roughly drawn, probably not Pronk workshop but often listed as such. 3 Cisterns and Basins only: J1 Handwashing - cisterns only, FR, Imari J2 Two Swans - basins only, FR, Imari, b&w These show similarities and seem to match; possibly ordered with Parasol pattern, to which it relates in some ways, the swans being taken from the same prints by Matthaus Merian as the birds in A and some of B1; and also the fish of B1. K The Potentate - cisterns and basins only, FR; an unusual example with the ‘Pronk’ figures’ but with later and ordinary export style decoration was offered at auction (Bonham’s, London, c. 2013). 4 Sconces: part of the last order from the VOC, several sizes and frame styles known, all famille rose L The Phoenix - sconces only M The Flame Bearer - sconces only N The Girl on a Swing - sconces only 4Xa a sconce of same type but with a Chinese sage and tree is recorded. 5 Square-form garnitures mostly derived from Maria Sybille Merian prints from European Insects) O Fritillary, white ground  P Dewberry, violet ground Q Redcurrants, black ground R Vine or Foxgrape, similar to R with black ground but foliage and small berries only, no insects;  small versions known simplified with white ground, S Auricula, yellow ground - only three vases known, one from a small image; nothing in Merian’s Erucarum Ortus matches. 5Xa garniture of this shape with chinese peony decoration in FR, (vase 2 beakers in Royal Colln, London; 2 vases with Cohen & Cohen 2015) 5Xb a  few  others  slightly  different  from  5Xa recorded. 5Xc some of the very small vases, similar to S, but with peony decoration in underglaze blue are recorded.

The Pronk Four









J2 ->




---> ----



? -------->














I4 G














Pair of Figural Candlesticks Qianlong period circa 1760 European Market Height: 13 inches; 33cm A very fine pair of Chinese export porcelain candlesticks modelled as standing maidens bearing gu form vases, the robes with elaborate medallions. Provenance: the Popowich Collection; previously with Cohen & Cohen. Pairs of court ladies in the form of candlesticks like this are well documented but this pair are particularly fine having very expressive and well moulded faces, as well as unusual and rich decoration to the robes. Pairs of court ladies such as these were used as table decorations in the eighteenth century. References: Howard & Ayers 1978, p615 No 644 - a single example similar to these;  p614, No 643, another pair which it is suggested are derived from a chinoiserie original; Howard 1994, p258 No 307, another pair; No 308, another pair; Williamson 1970,  plate  LIX,  various  single  examples  of  the  type;  Sharpe 2002, p209, a pair of ladies with lotus candleholders also derived from chinoiserie models but with unusual feather shoulder mantles possibly of South American influence; Cohen & Cohen 2001, p44, a pair; 2004, cat 26, a pair, 2007,  cat 16, a large pair with very similar decoration as this pair.

Under an oak, in stormy weather, I joined this rogue and whore together; And none but he who rules the thunder Can put this rogue and whore asunder. Marriage Certificate, 18th C



Pair of Figural Candlesticks Kangxi period circa 1700 European Market Height: 11½ inches; 29.3 cm A pair of Chinese export porcelain figures of standing boys, decorated in famille verte enamels, each holding a vessel functioning as a candleholder. These  are  a  very  rare  example  of  this  early figural candlestick, finely modelled and decorated with distinctively  cheerful  expressions  on  their  faces.  Later examples of standing boys in famille rose are known and also some much simpler examples.  Pairs of laughing boys carrying pots of lotus are known as hehe erxian or the Twin Immortals of Harmony. They  are  the  patron  deities  of  Chinese  merchants, particularly  of  Chinese  potters,  and  in  paintings  they often  accompany  Cai  Shen,  the  God  of  Wealth.  Boys were always strongly favoured in Chinese culture, and they  often  have  special  protective  amulets  or  gilded lockets around their necks to ward off evil spirits, and their bracelets, which were  traditionally worn by boys under sixteen years old, are made from the beaten iron nails of old coffins. These figures lack some of those attributes and are more likely simple attendants bearing some sort of ritual vessel, indicated by the cloth covering their hands.  References: an  identical  pair  to  these  is  in  the  Medeiros  e Almeida Museum, Lisbon; Antunes 1999, p61, a pair of famille verte boys; Antunes 2000, p31, a pair of tall famille verte boys on stands; Alves et al. 1998, p318, No 124, a pair of famille verte boys; Howard & Ayers 1978, p579, No 600, a pair of famille verte boys of the simpler type.

Son, if you really want something in this life, you have to work for it. Now quiet! They're about to announce the lottery numbers. Homer Simpson




et al 2013, p140, a lady from the British Museum (No 1963,0422.11); an-

other is in the Victoria & Albert Museum (No C.94-1963); Howard &

Ayers 1978, p612; du Boulay 1963, p82; Williamson 1970, pl XLI; For Admiral Byng: Finlay, Robert (2010) The Pilgrim Art: Cultures of Porcelain

Qianlong period circa 1740 Dutch or English Market Height: 16 inches; 42cm

in World History, University of California Press, p287; M John Cardwell

An extremely rare Chinese famille rose porcelain figure of a standing woman dressed in the formal clothes of the Frankfurt Jewish community.

from  Dr.  Cornelia  Aust,  Leibniz-Institut  für  Europäische  Geschichte

This figure is one of only three known different models of this size and decoration, with thick enamelling. The other two are a bearded man holding out his left arm with a purse (a pair to this figure) and a Turkish dancer. All are extremely rare, with five examples of the Turkish girl recorded and about a dozen of the others, more of the women known than men. They were a private order about 1740, but it is not clear for which market they were intended or who might have ordered them. All three derive from European prints but with modifications - suggesting either that the order specified the changes, or that they derive from intermediate prints as yet undiscovered. This  figure  and  the  male  companion  were  long  described  as  a  Dutch  couple  but  research  by  Ronald  Fuchs  has shown that they are in fact wearing the Jewish costume of 16th century Frankfurt, as illustrated in a print by Caspar Luyken, circa 1703, of  a Jewish couple, plate 39. The male figure is not too close to the man in this print but the costume is from another print, plate 71, by Luyken from the same book, of a Polish Jewish figure, (thought by some to be a portrait of the Ruthenian Jewish scholar Nathan Hannover) though the pose differs. It is unclear why Jewish figures should have been chosen at this time but it does seem to be deliberate as these two prints, the only ones of Jewish costume, have been selected out of the whole book. Many Sephardic jews were involved in trade with the East, based in Amsterdam and London, and some ordered Chinese Armorial dinner services so might have commissioned  such  figures.  However  the  dress  on  these  figures  is  of Ashkenazi Jewish type and they were generally less wealthy than the Sephardis. So it remains a mystery. The prints come from two series of exotic foreign costume collections and the fashion for such things in the second quarter of the eighteenth century may have prompted the order without any particular distinction. The Turkish dancer is from a print by Henri Bonnart, circa 1702. A pair of these male figures was in the ship's cabin of Admiral John Byng described as 'Dutch Merchants', from a label on the reverse of the male figure in the Hodroff Collection. So the misidentification is almost contemporary.  References: Fuchs, Ronald 2008, European Subjects on Chinese Porcelain,

Oriental Ceramics Society; For couples see: Sargent 1991, p112; Howard

1994, p252, a couple in the Hodroff Collection; for ladies see: Mengoni


2004, Art and Arms: Literature, Politics and Patriotism During the Seven Years

War, Manchester University Press, p60+; Cohen & Cohen 2013, p68, an

example of the Turkish Dancer; information about Historical Jewish dress

(IEG) pers. comm.

Related Figures: Although the body of this figure is made from moulds, many of the smaller details were worked by hand in the potters’ workshop in the finishing stages, as well as the enamelling all being done by hand too. In particular the bow at her waist and the distribution of the cloud motifs painted in grey on the turquoise apron appear to be unique to each example. By examining these in the published examples that we have found, at least 10 different figures can be differentiated. (The author would welcome information about other examples.) 1. British Museum 2. Victoria & Albert Museum 3. Winterthur Museum (Hodroff/Mottahedeh) 4. with Vanderven & Vanderven, 2015 5. Sotheby’s London, sold 2011 6. Cohen & Cohen 2014B 7. Peabody Essex Museum 8. Cohen & Cohen 1990 9. ex Martin Hurst coll, Williamson 1970, pl XLI 10. Cohen & Cohen 2017 - this example here Of the male figure only two examples have been found: 1. Winterthur Museum  (Hodroff/Mottahedeh) 2. Peabody Essex Museum Of the Turkish dancer only five examples are known: 1. British Museum 2. Victoria & Albert Museum 3 & 4. a pair in the Peabody Essex Museum 5. Cohen & Cohen 2013

left, detail of plate 39 by Caspar Luyken, from Neu Eröffnete Welt-Galleria, Pub: C Weigel, Nuremberg, 1703 below left, plate 71 below right an example of the male figure, from Howard 1994, with permission.


Punchbowl Qianlong period circa 1788-90 American Market Diameter: 15 inches; 39cm A Chinese export porcelain punchbowl painted to the exterior with scenes of the Hongs at Canton in famille rose enamels, showing the flags of Denmark, the Philippines, France, America, Sweden, Britain and The Netherlands. This  bowl  is  identical  to  one  now  back  at Nostell Priory. It was listed there in an inventory in 1806, belonging to Sir Rowland Winn, 6th Baronet, ‘a gay fox hunter’, who inherited Nostell in 1785 at the age of ten. The American flag is shown here next to the Swedish Hong,  where  the  Americans  set  up  business  having moved from the building between the English and Dutch Hongs around 1788. Also unusual on this bowl is the Philippine flag for  The Real Compañia de Filipinas (Royal  Philippine Company) that was founded in Madrid in March 1785 under the patronage of Charles III (see detail right). This flag was first used in 1787.


Related Examples: Sargent 2012, No 241, an identical bowl in the  Peabody  Essex  Museum;  another  identical  example  is  in Nostell Priory, Yorkshire (see Patricia Ferguson, Canton Revisited: A Hong Bowl at Nostell Priory,  Apollo  Supplement  Historic Houses and Collections, (April 2009) 18-23); two bowls in the Winterthur Museum, No 1961.1427 is similar but has the US flag between the English and Dutch as on the grisaille bowls and No 2005.0037, identical to this example; an identical bowl is in the Reeves collection, Washington and Lee University, gift of HF Lenfest - see Paul A Van Dyke & Maria Kar-wing Mok 2016, Images of the Canton Factories 1760-1822, Reading History in Art.


Punchbowl Qianlong period circa 1786-89 American or English Market Diameter: 15 inches; 39cm An extremely rare Chinese export punchbowl painted en grisaille with a continuous scene of the Hongs at Canton, showing  the  Danish,  French,  ‘Imperialist’,  Swedish, British, American and Dutch flags, with a fence at the front, the interior with a ship. This is an extremely rare Hong bowl, only a handful of others en grisaille are recorded in two groups, one group having the American flag placed here between the British and Dutch Hongs. Originally it was thought that this was a mistake by the painter, but it appears thus on a number of punchbowls and recent research suggests that the earliest American base (1786-8) might have been in  that  position.  An  identical  example  in  Temple Newsam,  Leeds  has  the  same  ship  inside  which  is identified as the East Indiaman William Pitt (II) which was in Canton 1786-1787 under Captain George Cowper and in 1789-90 under Captain Edward Manning, the latter is thought to have brought that bowl back - and so possibly this one too.


Related Examples: Sargent  2012,  No  240,  similar  bowl  but without the US flag in the Peabody Essex Museum; a British Museum example (No Franks.745.+) illustrated in Harrison Hall 1994, fig 6, no US flag; another in the Art Institute of Chicago with US flag; another at Temple Newsam, Leeds, which has a US flag as here and a ship inside.

The Hongs at Canton

Foreigners  were  forbidden  to  set  foot  on Chinese soil but in order for trade to proceed a small exception was made on the banks of the Pearl River at Canton (Guangzhou). This tiny section of the city about three hundred yards long and fifty yards deep, about the size of Buckingham Palace, was the funnel through which all Western Trade with China occurred for a century and a half. It contained the thirteen factories or Hongs which controlled the trade with all the Western Nations. Outside trade with Canton had occurred for hundreds  of  years  before  the  Europeans  arrived,  first locally with the East Indies and Malaya, then around 250 - 300 AD travellers from Western Asia arrived and also Persians and Arabs who were already trading along other routes. Foreigners were not permitted on Chinese soil but small concessions were made in  650 AD and a Muslim colony in Canton was established. It became so powerful that in 758 AD, after a conflict with the Chinese, the muslims burnt the city  and made off with its wealth. Later re-established it grew to an extent that Ibn Battúta, an Arab visitor in the fourteenth century, reported that there was even a mosque. This set the precedent for the European trade later established. In the sixteenth century the Portuguese arrived and  settled  at  Macao,  which  they  were  given  by  the Chinese Emperor in gratitude for controlling the piracy that had plagued the coast. Throughout the sixteenth century the Canton-Lisbon trade grew. Lisbon was the main centre in Europe for the trade of Chinese goods, everything  arriving  there  first  under  full  Portuguese control.  The Portuguese ascendancy in this trade was gradually reduced after Phillip II of  Spain and Portugal closed Lisbon to Dutch ships as he was at war with them in 1594, this same edict applying to the English shipping. This prompted the Dutch to go to China direct and led to  the  creation  of  the  Dutch East India Company (VOC) in 1602,  which  took  control  of the East Indies, established a base in Formosa (1624-61) and by  1638  had  sole  trade  with Japan.  Thus  Amsterdam replaced  Lisbon  in  the seventeenth century as the first stop in Europe for all Oriental goods,  the  VOC  becoming very  powerful:  in  1669  they

commanded 150 trading ships, 40 warships and an army of 10,000 men. The English East India Company was created on December 31 1600 though it was slower to get started than the Dutch. In 1627 a memorandum from the EEIC was sent to London from its base in Batavia (Jakarta) noting that a good trade with China was possible despite no strangers being officially permitted as the black market was  very  accommodating.  In  1637  Captain  Weddell arrived  in  the  Pearl  River  with  four  ships  from  the Courteen  Association  (a  short-lived  rival  to  the  EEIC backed by Charles I). He was kept waiting and so he fired his cannon at the Chinese, who reacted by banning all trade with the English. It was not until 1699 that the EEIC ship Macclesfield arrived at Canton and opened a new era for British trade. China had undergone a major change politically, with the collapse of the Ming dynasty and the early chaos of the Qing Dynasty sorted out by the great Emperor Kangxi (1662-1722), who re-established the kilns  at  Jingdezhen.  Trade  grew  dramatically:  the Macclesfield carried 20,000 pounds of tea; in 1723, five ships carried 900,000 lbs; in 1750 seven ships carried 2,000,000 lbs; between 1769 and 1777 the average annual amount was 10,000,000 lbs and in the 1830 the amount was 38,000,000 lbs, almost two thousand times as much as in 1700. Each  of  the  nations  trading  at  Canton established their own Hong as a base and there were also some  that  catered  for  the  occasional  or  unattached traders.  In  the  early  days  these  were  offices  and warehouses but they also employed skilled workmen who painted  and  fired  many  items.  The  kilns  from  such activities resulted in frequent fires and one such cleared much of the Hongs area in 1742. They were rebuilt and sometime  before  1765  many  of  them  took  on  the

appearance  they  have  in  these  bowls  with  European architectural styles. The English Hong was established in 1715, the French Hong in 1728 though their attendance was sporadic and they changed buildings several times. The Dutch Hong was established in 1762, having been kept at bay by the English, though their Hong ended up next door. The first Danish ship arrived in 1731 and the first Swedish ship in 1732, their Hongs being established after that. The Ostend company had a Hong for a short period  and  later  the  Imperial  Hong  was  established, under the flag of the Empress Maria Theresa, by a group of merchants called the Triest Company as a front for Hungarian registered French ships in 1779, lasting for two seasons. Later a Spanish Hong handled the Manila trade and after 1785 the American flag is recorded in some depictions  of  the  Hongs  such  as  on  these  two  bowls, though the US did not have a permanent Hong for some time. The enterprising supercargo arriving in China after  a  long  and  perilous  journey  would  have  a complicated,  frustrating  and  expensive  procedure  to follow to complete his trade. His ship would arrive at Macao and there be boarded by a licenced Chinese pilot who would guide them to the Bogue, or Bocca Tigris, the mouth of the Pearl River. At the Bogue agents of the Imperial  Commissioner  of  Customs  (known  as  the Hoppo)  would  exact  two  'port  charges':  'measurage' calculated according to the size of the ship, usually about £400 and a 'forced present', about £650 (together the cost of a substantial town house in London at the time). Two 'tidewaiters' would then be installed in the ship, acting as guides and also as informants or spies for the Chinese Authorities. The ship would proceed to anchorage off the island  of  Whampoa  in  the  middle  of  the  river,  about twelve miles from Canton. When all charges had been paid the ship would receive the 'chop' so that now the supercargoes could proceed in small craft up river to the Hongs. The unpredictable weather and winds meant that trade could only happen for six months of the year from midsummer to midwinter; out of season the hongs were closed, the flags removed and all foreigners dismissed as far back as Macao.

The Waterfront Tour The  supercargo  on  his  small  boat  would approach the shore in front of the Hongs amid a teeming swarm of boats carrying every kind of trade item. Before him would be the open space of Respondentia Walk, a promenade  in  front  of  the  Hongs  with  some  finely dressed Europeans talking or arranging deals. To his left would  be  the  Danish  flag over the Danish Hong some distance from others.  As his eye moved rightwards  he  might  see New China Street and then three buildings along  Old China Street, a narrow street leading away to the Thirteen Factories  Street  that  ran behind  the  hongs.  Old China Street was lined with many  small  shops  run  by Chinese  merchants  selling all  types  of  wares  for  the private  traders.  As  well  as the  main  cargo requirements  for  his  ship, the  supercargo  would  also have  private  trade  orders, which enabled him to make a  substantial  personal  fortune.  Old  China  Street  was eventually  destroyed  by  fire  and  a  new  street  was constructed nearer to the Danish Hong. In the central part  of  the  Hongs  façade  the  merchant  could  see  the French Hong (the white flag) and the Swedish Hong. At this point would be other hongs, depending on the date - at the time of these two bowls the Philippine Company flag or the Imperial flag could be seen here.  To  the  right  of  that  is  the  Old  English  East India Company Hong, now used for private trading and next  to  it  the  Chow  Chow  Hong  which  has  Chinese architecture. Next was Hog Lane another way through to Thirteen Factories Street and also lined with many shops crammed full of porcelain, silks, tea, silver and mother of pearl.  Turning  further  to  his  right  the merchant  would  then  see  the  grandest building  of  all,  the  English  Hong,  with  a substantial two-level arcaded porch or veranda projecting out towards the shore, shown here


in awkward perspective and on one level, and next to it a smaller version of this building with the Dutch flag and finally another one called the Creek Hong catering for private traders. During  his  stay  the  supercargo  would  be confined to this small area. He was forbidden to carry firearms, to have personal contact with the Chinese outside the workshops or even to learn the Chinese language, foreign women were not allowed, and he could not even ride in a sedan chair. The earliest bowl with these Hongs dates from 1765 and is in puce enamels having a panel on the other side of Copenhagen from a print of 1764. The changes in the architecture can be plotted from a careful study of these bowls and from paintings which were also very popular, these two panelled versions date from about 1775 and later ones from about 1782 have a continuous scene all round the bowl. These two bowls are from the late 1780s when the US was trading  in  Canton.  It  is  now  thought  that  the American Hong was first situated between the British and Dutch Hongs about 1785-1787 as shown on the grisaille  bowl  but  soon  after  moved  next  to  the Swedish Hong as shown on the famille rose bowl. Having completed all his trade deals and stocked up his own space with porcelains and other items to satisfy the fashions at home, the supercargo may well have looked around the shops in Hog Lane for a suitably impressive souvenir of his visit. The only surviving invoice for a Hong bowl is for the private cargo of Captain Green of the Empress of China the first  US  ship  to  arrive  in  Canton  in  1785,  who records: '4 Factory painted Bowles @ 5 ½ (dollars) ea.'

References: Hong bowls are so integral to any literature on Export Porcelain that they feature ubiquitously. This survey lists some of them giving the author's dating and the flags, illustrated from left to right. LITZENBERG 2003, p156, No 148, c 1795, flags of US,  Dk,  Sp,  Fr,  Sw,  GB  and  NL;  HERVOUËT  &  BRUNEAU  1986,  a  range  of examples: p24, No 1.25, puce single panel, c 1765, Dk, Fr, Sw, GB, NL; No 1.26, famille rose, two panels same as this example, c 1775, Dk, Fr & Sw, GB, NL; No 1.27, FR, continuous scene, c1783, Dk, Imp, Fr Sw, GB, NL (note Imp and Fr reversed); No 1.29, FR, continuous, c1790-1800, Dk, US, Sw, GB, NL; LLOYD HYDE 1964, p28, pl III, famille rose, continuous scene, with the addition of railings at the front, but the Imperial flag is gone and a US flag is in its place, the French flag appears to have moved to the right; PHILLIPS 1956, p14, fig 8, famille rose, a very similar bowl to this Fr example but with the US flag inserted between the GB and NL flags, Dk, Fr, Imp, Sw, GB, US, NL; SARGENT 1996, p148, No 43, famille rose, Dk, US, Sw, GB, NL; p152, No 45, grisaille, c 1785, Dk, Fr, Imp, Sw, GB, NL; p142, No 40, a map of Canton of about 1840 which shows the layout of the Hongs. MUDGE, Jean McLure (1981) p135, figs 41a-c, famille rose, c 1785-90, Dk, US, Sw, GB, NL; SCHEURLEER, LUNSINGH 1974, No 54, panelled type, Sw, GB, NL; BUERDELEY 1962, p18, fig 7, Sw, GB, NL; HOWARD 1994, p200, No 233, famille rose, continuous scene but lacking imperial flag, c1785, Dk, Fr, Sw, GB, NL; HOWARD 1997, p51, No 46, famille rose, continuous, c 1785, Dk, Imp, Fr, Sw, GB, NL (note Imp and Fr swapped); LE CORBEILLER 1974, p115, No 49, FR, c1780, Dk, Imp, Fr, Sw, GB, NL; FORBES 1982, p28, No 26, famille rose, two panels, c 1770, the only flags are the French and another unidentified, this has an unusual view and shows the shops along Old China Street clearly, and has the street signs in Chinese; a similar example is in the Bayou Bend Collection in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; BRAWER 1992, p24, No 4, an example with the Imperial and French flags reversed; LE CORBEILLER & FRELINGHUYSEN 2003, p48, No 51, famille rose bowl with a US flag inserted between the English and Dutch flags, therefore not corresponding to a particular Hong. The interior of this bowl shows a ship being constructed with the monogram BGE for Benjamin George Eyre (b1738) who was an aide-de-camp to George Washington and later a shipbuilder in Philadelphia; NADLER 2001, p46-49, figs 22-26, three bowls, (i) famille rose, c 1775, Dk, Fr, Sw, GB, NL; (ii) FR, c1783, Dk, Imp, Fr, Sw, GB, NL; (iii) FR, c1790, with US between GB and NL,  the  BG  Eyre  example.  KRAHL  &  HARRISON-HALL  1994,  p85,  No  34; HOWARD & AYERS 1978, p208-209, No 206, the same example as FORBES above; No 207, a bowl, though the Imperial flag is recorded as being that of Brazil; COHEN & COHEN: Soldier Soldier 2003, p48, No 24, a bowl with continuous scene; Now &Then 2005 p62, No 30, a unique large bowl, circa 1845, the interior with a scene of the Hongs; Ladies First 2007, p48, No 29, a bowl with panels; Tiptoe Through the Tulipieres 2008 a rare small bowl with interior panel showings the Hongs circa 1850 with Danish flag over what was the Dutch hong, US, GB, Dk.


Punchbowl Qianlong period circa 1785 American market Diameter: 15½ inches; 39 cm A large Chinese export porcelain punchbowl with famille rose decoration, the exterior with two panels of  foxhunting  scenes,  the  interior  with  an  East Indiaman in calm waters. The exterior decoration is known in a number  of  foxhunting  punchbowls  that  were popular in the late 18th century, particularly for the American Market. The scenes are derived from Western  prints  but  have  been  recopied  several times in China and the precise source has not been found. The  interior  usually  has  a  pheasant shooting  scene  taken  from  a  print  by  Thomas Burfod after James Seymour, but this bowl has a ship  inside,  suggesting  it  was  a  specific commission. References: Litzenburg 2003, p211, No 213, a plate and a suguar bowl with a very similar ship, from a group of pieces  acquired  by  Martin  Root  of  Montague, Massachusetts.

I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure. Clarence Darrow



Punchbowl Jiaqing period circa 1806 American Market Diameter: 16¼ inches; 41cm An important Chinese export porcelain punchbowl for the  American  market,  with  a  ship  building  scene  en grisaille,  the  borders  in  gold  and  iron  red,  with  the monogramme HE  Provenance: Henry Eckford (1775-1832) by descent to Elizabeth I Richardson (1904-2000), Providence, Rhode Island, to her nephew, Alanson B. Houghton II (19302016). Exhibited: 1983  “Inherited & Collected: Rhode Island Collects the Decorative Arts” Rhode Island Museum of Art, Providence, RI This  bowl  is  one  of  the  most  significant examples  of  Chinese  export  porcelain  made  for  the American Market. It was made for Henry Eckford (17751832) a Scottish shipbuilder who worked in the USA, and who  was  described  as  ‘the  father  of  the  US  Navy’. Although the family story has it that the bowl was a gift from the Turkish Government to Eckford circa 1832, the style of the decoration is earlier and it seems more likely to have been a gift from John Jacob Astor to Eckford circa 1806. The scene on the front is taken from Plate 1: ‘A Ninety Eight Gun Ship on the Stocks’ from a series of 8 plates in Introduction to Drawing Ships, pub: London, Robert Sayer 1788. Henry Eckford was born in 1775 in Kilwinning, near Irvine in the Clyde District, Scotland,  the  son  of  Henry  Eckford  Sr  and Maria (or Janet) Black. in 1791 he was sent to Quebec  to  work  under  his  mother’s  brother John Black, a shipbuilder. In 1796 he moved to New York to work in the ship building industry. He married Marion Bedell in 1799 and she bore him at least nine children. Philadelphia was then the  main  American  ship  building  city  but Eckford, among others, helped New York gain ascendancy in the first decade of the nineteenth century.  He  was  a  shrewd  businessman  and


gained  a  reputation  for  producing  good  quality  ships using live oak and for keeping within the planned costs. Between 1803 and 1805, working with Edward Beebe, he built the ship Beaver for John Jacob Astor, his first  ship  intended  for  the  China  Trade.  In  1806  the Beaver went  to  Canton  under  the  Captaincy  of  Isaac Chauncey,  where  “a  full  load  of  Teas,  Nankeens  & China” was purchased (letter from Chauncey). It seems likely that this bowl was brought back at this time. The use of the earlier print is interesting: it was produced at the time when the young Eckford would have been learning to draw ships as part of his apprenticeship with  his  uncle.  So  he  could  well  have  chosen  it  for nostalgic reasons - or it is even possible that the drawing that went to China to be copied was Eckford’s own copy made as a boy. During the War of 1812 Eckford entered into a contract with the US government to build ships on the Great Lakes, at which he was very successful.  James Fenimore Cooper in his History of the Navy of the United States of America (1839) wrote: ‘On the 6th April Mr Eckford put into the water on the American side,  a  beautiful  little  pilot-boat  schooner  that  was intended  for  a  lookout  and  despatch  vessel.  She  was armed with merely one long brass nine on a pivot, and was called the Lady of the Lake. Two days later the keel of a new ship was laid.’  In the History of American Sailing Ships (1935) by  Howard  Irving  Chapelle,  Eckford  is  described  as  a ‘genius of organisation’ and ‘the designer of nearly all of the men-of-war built on Lake Ontario during the war, Superior, General Pike, Lady of the Lake, Mohawk and others’.  He  was  also  a  great  teacher  and  many  of  his apprentices went on to great careers including Jacob Bell and Isaac Webb.

Plate 1: ‘A Ninety Eight Gun Ship on the Stocks’ from a series of 8 plates in Introduction to Drawing Ships, pub: London, Robert Sayer 1788

After the war Eckford prospered greatly (his taxed earnings by 1820 were $50,000) and he went into business  with  the  banker  and  insurance  broker  Jacob Barker. He built a fine house beteen 7th & 8th Avenues near 24th Street. He continued his association with  John Jacob Astor, building more ships for him: the Isabella and Henry Astor of 1820 and the brig Tamaahmaah of 1824. He had also became part of the leadership of Tammany Hall, a coterie of Democrats who ruled New York. In 1826 the group was accused of corruption by the District Attorney Hugh Maxwell and many were found guilty of fraud, though not Eckford. Maxwell however refused to declare him innocent so Eckford challenged him to a duel, which was refused. In 1828 his eldest daughter Sarah Drake fell ill and another daughter Henrietta was badly burnt when her  skirts  caught  fire  and  her  brother  John  burnt  his hands trying to rescue her. Both Henrietta and John died of their wounds and then Sarah died.  After  this  great  financial  and  personal  loss Eckford resolved to rebuild his fortunes away from New York. He built a 26-gun corvette United States in 1830 and sailed  it  to  Constantinople  in  1831  where  it  was purchased by Sultan Mahmud II for $150,000 and he was commissioned by the Sultan to begin building ships there for the Turkish Navy. Eckford  became  a  favourite  with  the  Sultan and the Americans immersed themselves in Turkish life, enjoying the conversational proverbs frequently used in polite society. One they recorded was: “Death is a black camel which kneels at every door”. Henry Eckford died suddenly on 12 November 1832, probably from cholera. His body returned to New York on a ship appropriately called the Henry Eckford. His grandaughter Janet Drake survived in New York  and  her  daughter  Katherine  Coleman  DeKay became Mrs Arthur Bronson (1834-1901) of Newport, Rhode Island and Venice. Henry James described her in Italian Hours and  she  was  also  friends  with  Robert Browning.

Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It is already tomorrow in Australia. Charles Schulz

Henry Eckford by Henry Inman (1801-46)

References: Mudge 1962, pp. 184 and p. 193, figure 133, this bowl;  Phyllis  deKay  Wheelock  (1947)  American Neptune, Quarterly Journal of Maritime History, Vol VII, No 3, July 1947, an entertaining account of Eckford’s life on which much of this is based. Henry Eckford’s Residence in Manhattan, between 7th & 8th Ave, near 24th St, drawn circa 1860



Dinner Plate

Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils. Louis Hector Berlioz

Qianlong period circa 1750 European Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm A rare Chinese export porcelain dinner plate decorated with a European subject scene in bright famille rose, the rim with a gilt scrolling foliage border. This scene shows Earth by Francesco Albani (1578-1660) one of a series of the four elements, painted between 1625-8 for the Cardinal of  Savoy,  later  King  of  Sardinia,  and  which  are  now  in  the  Galleria Sabauda,  Turin.    Cybele  is  seated  in  her  chariot  surrounded  by personifications  of  three  of  the  Seasons  (Flora  as  Spring;  Ceres  as Summer and Bacchus as Autumn) but harsh Winter is absent as Albani intended to flatter the Cardinal’s sunny disposition. A copy attributed to Poussin is in the Galleria d’Arte Bodda, Turin. All four designs are known on Chinese plates and teawares, their tondo format fitting very well. There appear to be two orders of the plates, one with a blue border and the other with a gilt foliage rim border as in this example. There are also differences in the placement of the composition within the circle, suggesting a different workshop or set of painters for each order. The series was engraved by many different artists including:  -Étienne Baudet (1636-1711) circa 1695, ‘wrong’ orientation for the porcelain but the same as the original paintings;  -Jacques Chereau (1688-1776) circa 1725, ‘right’ orientation;  -Nicolas IV de Larmessin IV (1684-1755) circa 1720, ‘right’ orientation;  -Antoine Hérisset (1685-1769);  -Nicolas Dauphin de Beauvais (1687-1783) ‘right’ orientation  -later engravers including Francesco Barolozzi circa 1796. The series by Chereau, Larmessin or de Beauvais could have been the ones taken to China but it is not clear which was used. Other prints by Chereau and Larmessin are known on export porcelain. References: Mezin 2002, p86-9, Nos 67-70, four plates with each of the scenes and illustration of a set of engravings by Nicolas (IV) de Larmessin (1684-1755); Williamson 1970, plate XXXIX, four plates including ‘Earth’ with gilt rim border and plate XXIV a teapot with this design; Howard 1994, p111; Beurdeley 1962, p179; Hervouët & Bruneau 1986, p318-9; Jörg 1989, p174-5; Le Corbeiller 1974, p64-5’  Sargent  2012,  p297;  Palmer  1976,  p71;  Howard  &  Ayers  1978,  p323; Gordon1984, No 46; Puglisi, Catherine R. 1999, Franceso Albani, p144, Cat 60, the series, and note of two further engravers: A. Paquier & C. Ferreri;  Scheurleer 1974, No 232, a plate; Pinto de Matos 2011, Vol 2, p228, No 320, a plate and illustration of the de Beauvais print version; Cohen & Cohen 2016, No 53, a plate with the same design but with the blue enamel rim; Cunha Alves 2016, p134, No 76, a teabowl and saucer with this design.


engraving by Etienne Baudet after Francesco Albani

engraving by Jacques Chereau after Francesco Albani


Pair of Dinner Plates Qianlong period circa 1750 European Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm

Sunlight's a thing that needs a window Before it enter a dark room. Windows don't happen. RS Thomas

A pair of Chinese export porcelain dinnper plates painted en grisaille and  gilt  with  highlights  of  rouge de fer,  with  a mythological  scene  of  a  bathing  goddess  attended  by  two putti, the rim with an elaborate border of floral swags and symbols. The  central  image  is  taken  from  a  small  oval ornament print by Claude Duflos, circa 1710. The image, described as Venus Bathing, had originally been traced to a painting  by  Nicolas  Fouché  that  was  engraved  by  Benoît Audran the Elder circa 1700. The main figure and one of the putti are taken from that but the addition of another putto at her feet suggested an intermediate print, which has now been found and which indicates that goddess is intended to be Diana. Between about 1700 and 1720 Duflos and others based in the rue St Jacques in Paris, produced and sold a large range of these small prints, mostly in an oval frame, and taken from other prints and paintings. The subjects were classical, pastoral and erotic.  As well as appealing to collectors, these were sold as designs for workers in the decorative arts to be reproduced on snuff boxes, European porcelains, silver and other media. The images are about four inches long and on sheets ten inches long. Quite a number of these designs also found their way to China, being easily transportable, and were copied onto teawares and plates like this pair. Recent research has identified  about  forty  of  these  prints  used  on  export porcelain. Fouché was a pupil of Pierre Mignard and worked mainly in Paris. Benoît Audran the Elder was from a family of engravers based in Paris. Another work by Audran, Flora and Zephyr, after Charles Antoine Coypel, is also known en grisaille on Chinese export porcelain. That also exists as a small oval ornament print copied from the Audran print.

engraving circa 1690-1700, by Benoît Audran the elder (1661-1721) after a painting by Nicolas Fouché (1665–1727) (image from Leiden University)

References: Mezin 2002, p92, No 73, a plate with this scene, but a different border; Hervouët & Bruneau 1986, No 13.16, a plate with the same border as this one.


small ornament print, circa 1710, inscribed Diane, a Paris chez Claude Duflos , rue St Jacques


Dinner Plate Qianlong period circa 1745 European Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm A Chinese export porcelain dinner plate painted en grisaille and gilt with an exterior scene of a seated couple holding wineglasses aloft, the man with a gun, two dogs beside them, the  rim  with  an  elaborate  border  incorporating  classical symbols  and  a  scene  of  cupid  shooting  a  snake  with  an arrow. This elegant scene is also known in famille rose enamels but with a simpler shell scroll border and is found on teawares also in famille rose. The grisaille version here seems to be very rare. The source for the design has not been identified. It seems similar to scenes by Charles-Joseph Natoire (1700– 1777) a prolific French painter but this type of subject was popular in the mid-eighteenth century and similar works can be found in England too. References: Hervouët & Bruneau 1986, p70, No 3.16, a plate in famille rose.

You wanna be taken seriously, you need serious hair. Melanie Griffiths in Working Girl (1988)

famille rose dinner plate Cohen & Cohen


detail of shooting scene by Charles-Joseph Natoire (1700-1777)


Pair of Reverse Painted Glass Paintings Qianlong period circa 1790 English Market Approx. 18 inches by 13 inches; 46cm x 34cm A rare pair of Chinese export paintings on glass, reverse painted  with  two  interior  drinking  scenes  and  Latin inscriptions beneath. These  two  paintings  belong  to  a  rare  group  of European  subjects  painted  in  Canton,  probably  in  one workshop, for the English market.   The scenes here are from a series of six images by Sébastien Leclerc II (1676-1763) illustrating the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15: 11-32) that were engraved by Richard Purcell and published by Robert Sayer in the 1760s. They were popular and re-engravings were made by other printmakers, including Thomas Riley, published by Thomas Bowles. These are probably taken from the Purcell/Sayer suite, which appear now to be the wrong orientation but actually would be correct as the images were painted on the back of the glass. The top image shows The Prodigal Son Revelling with the Harlots and the lower scene is The Prodigal Son Feasted on his Return. The Latin inscriptions underneath refer loosely to the story but their authorship is unknown. These scenes are not recorded elsewhere on Chinese export art. References: Cohen & Cohen 2016, No 60, two glass paintings after Henry Bunbury; The Rijksmuseum has two Dutch Delft dishes with these scenes, slightly altered, in blue and white (BK-NM-12400-56 & BK-NM-12400-58 from the collection of JF Loudon) and a wall plaque with the harlots scene (BK-NM-12400-24).


The Latin inscriptions underneath refer loosely to the story but their authorship is unknown. The style of the Latin  suggests  a  gentleman  educated  at  one  of  the  better English public schools. PATERNUM REDITU COR PATRIS DENUO RIDET CUM PERDITUM TANDEM REDIRE PODEST VIDERE INVIDIA FRATRIS HAEC TURBARE GAUDIA TENTANS RIDETUR QUOD INVIDUS RARO NOCERE POTEST (The paternal heart smiles again with the pride of the father, The lost (soul) returns at last to see the envy of his brother. He should laugh instead at the joy of this test, because an unlucky person rarely causes any harm.) HOC DISCE EXEMPLO FORMOSI POSE CARERE TRISTIA SEQUENTUR IN VIAT GAUDIA LATIS OMNIA VOLUPTAS EMPTA DOLORE (1) NOCET NEC SEMPER VIOLA NEC SEMPER LILA FLORENT (2) (Learn this by example: thoughtless pretty people should expect sadness to follow their joys. Pleasure bought with pain hurts. Neither violets nor lilies are always in flower.) (1) ‘Empta Voluptas Dolore’ is a common phrase from the Emblem books meaning ‘Pleasure which is bought through pain’. (2) ‘Nec semper viola nec semper lila florent’ a quotation from Ovid’s Artem Amatorium, Book II, ‘Neither always violets nor always lilies are in flower’


Les Moissonneurs (1768) (The Reapers)

This is an opéra comique by Charles Simon Favart (17101792) and composer Egidio Romualdo Duni (1708-1775). A short suite of prints was produced by Charles Eisen to illustrate the story - but were also received as a simple suite of genre images in the pastoral style. The opera is a loose contemporary reworking of the Old Testament story of Ruth and Boaz, with an emphasis on the paternalistic  generosity  of  the  seigneur Candor  (Boaz)  and  his relationship with Rosine (Ruth), who lives in poverty with her adoptive mother, Gennevote, but is actually a distant relative of Candor.  In  addition  Rosine  is  pursued  by  Candor’s  Parisian nephew, whose metropolitan selfishness is contrasted with the bucolic virtues of Rosine and Candor, who eventually fall in love. The suite of six drawings by Charles Dominique Joseph Eisen (1720-1778) were published in 1768 at Chez Petit, rue du petit Pont, Paris, with images in small ovals with verses from the opera underneath, some engraved by Pierre Adrien Le Beau (17481810)  and  at  least  one  by  Emmanuel  Jean  Nepomucène  de Ghendt (1738-1815) who was in Paris from 1766 and engraved many book illustrations after Eisen. The engravings appear to be rare and an edition of the text with them has not been located, so they were probably published and sold independently.  Of the six prints four (a, b, c, d) are found on Chinese famille rose teaservices from the 1770s with varying borders. One other (e) is similar to an earlier teaservice, circa 1745-50, the four figures seated at a picnic corresponding fairly closely but not the rest of the composition, suggesting that this service and Eisen’s drawing may have had a common original design as inspiration, possibly by Lancret or Pater. It is unusual to find the majority of a suite of prints used on porcelain - often it is just one with no clear reason why that one was chosen. Although of roughly similar date these porcelains do not appear to have been ordered as part of one commission. References:  Hervouët  &  Bruneau  1986, Nos 4.45, 7.48, 9.76, 9.77, 7.79; Howard & Ayers  1978,  Vol  II,  p375,  No  369b; Litzenburg 2003, p171, cup & saucer with two  of  these  images  (c&d);    the Rijksmuseum has five of the six; Sotheby’s Mentmore sale, 25 May 1977, lot 2621, 2 watercolours for a and possibly d.



Scene X print in Rijksmuseum  (RP-P-OB-69.079)

Scene XVI print in Rijksmuseum  (RP-P-OB-69.080)

detail of chocolate pot,  Chinese export porcelain,  famille rose, circa 17745-50 (H&B, p169, No 7.79)



Scene I print in Rijksmuseum (RP-P-OB-69.08)

detail of roundel on a coffee pot, Chinese export porcelain,  famille rose, circa 1770-80

Scene VII (Author’s collection)

detail of roundel on a saucer,  Chinese export porcelain,  famille rose, circa 1770-80

Scene VI print in Rijksmuseum  (RP-P-OB-52.616)

detail of roundel on a saucer,  Chinese export porcelain,  famille rose, circa 1770-80



Scene IV print in Rijksmuseum  (RP-P-OB-69.082)

detail of roundel on a saucer,  Chinese export porcelain,  famille rose, circa 1770-80

Research Updates C&C 2013, No 51 Porcelain Pen Box Qianlong period circa 1755 Anglo-Indian Market Length: 6½ inches; 16.5cm A rare porcelain penbox decorated in famille rose enamels with two seated figures on the outer lid, the inside with a European scene in a farmyard, the rest decorated with scattered flowers in the style of Meissen; European white metal mounts. The exterior scene is known on a few different Chinese snuffboxes, but this appears to be the only recorded use of the interior scene. It is taken from a print by Soubeyran after Boucher’s La Belle Villageoise. The companion picture by Boucher, engraved by Aveline, also appears in a simplified form on a Chinese plate, but the image is reversed from the Aveline engraving and the couple placed in a landscape, suggesting the precise print source is a copy of the Aveline print. At least five designs derived from the works of François Boucher are now known on Chinese export porcelain.

La Belle Villageoise Pierre Soubeyran (1709-1775)  after F Boucher,  Published by: Huquier, June 1738

detail  La Belle Cuisiniere P Aveline after Boucher

C&C 2007, No 51 Pair of Dinner Plates Yongzheng, circa 1728-30 English Market Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm A pair of underglaze blue and white dinner plates with a central armorial, the cavetto with five floral panels reserved on a trellis diaper, the rim with sprays of flowers, the rim edge glazed brown. The arms are: Palmer (main shield): Argent two bars sable charged with three trefoils slipped of the field, in a chief a greyhound currant of the second collared of the first. The coat in pretence (small central shield) has been difficult to identify because the armorial tinctures are not distinguished in the blue and white and was thought to be either  Derwell  or  Belasyse  (or  Bellasis).  The  ‘in  pretence’ shield denotes an heiress. New research has confirmed that this was made for the  marriage  of  Charles  Palmer  (b1690),  son  of  Charles Palmer, a Canon of York Minster, who married Elizabeth

Bellasis around 1730. She was an heiress, her two brothers having  died,  one  in  Bombay  in  the  service  of  the  EEIC. Charles was the grandson of Sir William Palmer, whose uncle William Palmer was the ancestor of the Palmer Baronets of Wanlip, who also bear these arms. Elizabeth, who died  in 1733, was the great-grand-daughter of Sir William Bellasis of Brancepeth,  whose  first  cousin  Thomas  was  created  1st Viscount  Fauconberg.  Charles  was  a  banker  and  lawyer, (Middle Temple in 1718) and lived at Thurnscoe Hall near Barnsley. References: Howard 1974, p167, this service illustrated.


Objects acquired from Cohen & Cohen  are now in the following  museum collections: British Museum, London Bristol Museum Jeffrye Museum,  London Foundling Hospital Museum, London Groniger Museum, Groeningen East India Company Museum Lorient Adrien-Dubouché National Porcelain Museum, Limoges Sèvres Ceramics Museum Peabody Essex Museum, Salem Mass. Kenton Foundation, California New Orleans Museum Of Art Virginia Museum Of Art, Richmond Va Minneapolis Museum Winterthur Museum Norton Museum of Art, Palm Beach Fl Los Angeles County Museum of Art The Tea Museum, Hong Kong Hong Kong Maritime Museum Nanchang University Museum The Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina The Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore The Musée Guimet, Paris The Metropolitan Museum, New York Muzeum Żup Krakowskich Wieliczka


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