An especially fine and important pair of Chinese export porcelain Yongzheng period armorial chargers, made for the Swedish market, decorated in famille rose enamels, and bearing the arms of HOPKEN, for Daniel Hopken, one of the founders of the Swedish East India Company. Measuring 13 1/2″ across and in excellent condition. Circa 1730.
A very beautiful Chinese export porcelain covered tureen and matching stand, decorated in famille rose enamels with some of the loveliest classic riverscape scenes with elegant pavilions and pagodas amongst finely enameled and detailed foliage. Complimenting the beautiful painting, is the finely cast European silver-form shapes, the richly gilded borders, the hares’ head handles and and pomegranate knop. All in excellent condition, the undertray measuring 14″ across, the tureen 12″, and bearing an old dealer’s label with a price of $35,000 (we can do a bit better than that). Circa 1760.
A rather unusual design we have not seen on Chinese export porcelain, this lovely octagonal form 8″ plate is decorated in famille rose enamels and centered with the image of a hermit crab peering out of his adopted home in a conch shell! The border and cavetto painted with another crab, a carp, and some elegantly rendered, feathery seaweed and blossoms. A wonderful composition, almost hinting at a Japanese aesthetic. Beautifully made and decorated. Very good condition. Circa 1740-50.
A very, very rare 15″ Chinese export porcelain punch bowl, decorated in famille rose enamels and depicting an unusual view of a company of European style horsemen riding through a landscape of classic Chinese rock formations and beneath a tree with branches laden with preposterously over-sized blossoms. The sixteen characters are as varied as the colorful mounts they ride as there are officers with swords drawn, a standard bearer, a drummer and trumpeter, as well as a presumed merchant riding nonchalantly along having a smoke! The interior of the bowl as richly decorated, centered with a large floral bouquet at the bottom and rimmed with an elaborate foliate border. It has been suggested that this design represents the Dutch Embassy sent to China in the 1660s, and as the bowl stylistically dates more to the 1750s, that the piece was made to mark the centennial of that mission. Fully illustrated and discussed in Howard and Ayers’ China for the West, Vol. I, pages 321-233. Restoration to a small part of the foot rim, otherwise good condition and a remarkable and rare bit of history of the China Trade. Circa 1755.
A striking pair of beautifully modeled Chinese export porcelain covered sauce tureens in the form of pomegranates, each decorated in brilliant underglaze blue with riverscapes and floral designs, the star-shaped crown of each fruit forming the piece’s handle, and the covers of each with a applied gilded vine going into three embossed pomegranates bursting with seeds. Each approximately 6″ x 6″. Minor restoration to a small piece of each crown, otherwise very good condition, beautiful deep blue color and gilding. Charming fruit and vegetable form tablewares were a novel trend in the mid-late 18th century and similar concepts were executed by many of the European porcelain factories of the time. Circa 1760.
In close to forty years in business, this is the first opportunity we have had the pleasure of offering one of the rarest and most desirable icons of the China Trade and early American history: a very fine Chinese export porcelain plate decorated with the emblem of the ‘Society of Cincinnati’. The Society was formed at the close of the Revolution by Major General Henry Knox for officers who had served three years or more in the Continental Army or Navy, as well as officers of certain rank in the French Army or Navy. The Society is still in existence today, its membership consisting of the direct male descendants of the original officers. One of these original members, Henry Lee, conceived of the idea of an extensive dinner service bearing the society’s insignia being held by a figure of Fame blowing her trumpet. He commissioned Major Samuel Shaw, the supercargo on the first American ship to trade with China, to order the dinner service(s) which he would share with General George Washington. Shaw returned on the ship PALLAS in 1785 with this order, of which this plate was part. The plate measures 9 5/8″ in diameter with a shaped and molded edge and a floral and butterfly border of underglaze blue, all centered with a finely rendered image of Fame and the Society’s insignia. In very fine condition with only the most minor of rim frits to the reverse, otherwise a superlative example. Bearing the collection sticker and inventory number on the reverse of Elinor Gordon of Vilanova, PA. Examples in the Metropolitan Museum and Winterthur to name a few. Circa 1785.