There may be information missing from this page.
Following a recent issue with object details, some objects (~1%) are not showing all the data they should. We estimate the data will be fully restored at the end of this week.
Updated: 27 April 2015
Kendi or porcelain water vessel in form of an elephant. Underglaze blue with wide vertical bands running down each side of the elephant's body with a garden scene. Tall prunus branch on the neck. Base unglazed.
- Made in: Jingdezhen
- (Asia,China,Jiangxi (province),Jingdezhen)
- Height: 199 millimetres
- Width: 155 millimetres
- Depth: 104 millimetres
Published PDF date : Ming late 16th centuryRoom 95 label text:
Blue-and-white kendi in the form of an elephant
Marine archaeologists recovered an identical kendi, in the form of a caparisoned elephant (saddled and with a bridle), from the wreck of the San Diego which sank in AD 1600 outside Manila Bay. Divers found more than 500 blue-and-white porcelians from Jingdezhen which were originally destined for the New World and Spain on the shipwreck. Philip II of Spain once owned a similar kendi as demonstrated by an example listed in his possessions in an inventory taken after his death in 1590. There it is listed as "Una garrafa con cuello alto y una cabeza de elefante por pico de porcelana azul y blanca" [A bottle of blue-and-white porcelain with a high neck and a head of an elephant for a spout].
Porcelain with underglaze cobalt-blue decoration
Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province 江西省, 景德鎮
Ming dynasty, Wanli period, about AD 1590-1610
Purchased by Sir Percival David from Bluett & Sons on 27th April 1933. Listed in Bluett & Sons Sales Day Book (SDB) vol. 14, p.206, Lot 118. £20. Bluett's purchased this ewer (one of two) at Sotheby's, 25th-26th April 1933 from the Stephen D. Winkworth Collection Sale.
If you’ve noticed a mistake or have any further information about this object, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Object reference number: RRC39572
British Museum collection data is also available in the W3C open data standard, RDF, allowing it to join and relate to a growing body of linked data published by organisations around the world.
The Museum makes its collection database available to be used by scholars around the world. Donations will help support curatorial, documentation and digitisation projects.