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Updated: 14 April 2015
Small porcelain bird feeder in form of a horizontal trough with two circular openings. Two circular fittings afixed to one side. Underglaze blue with scrolling flowers around top and bottom. Reserved side panel with scrolling flower sprays on one side, and horizontal inscription on the other. Large blue flower heads in relief at each end.
- Made in: Jingdezhen
- (Asia,China,Jiangxi (province),Jingdezhen)
- Height: 58 millimetres
- Width: 88 millimetres
Inscription Typereign mark
Inscription Positionon side
Inscription TransliterationDa ming xuande nian zhi
Inscription TranslationMade during the Xuande reign of the Great Ming dynasty
Inscription CommentSix-character Xuande mark written horizontally in underglaze blue on one side
Published PDF date : Ming XuandeRoom 95 label text:
Blue and white bird feeder
Keeping pets was a fashionable Ming pastime. Caged birds were taught to talk, sing and perform tricks for entertainment. This porcelain bird feeder was made to be attached to a bird’s cage. It may have contained water or hemp seeds which, even today in China, are still thought to make birds sing more sweetly. There is a six-character horizontal Xuande reign mark in underglaze blue along one side. Archaeologists have excavated an impressive range of Xuande mark and period bird feeders from the Xuande strata at the imperial kilns at Jingdezhen.
Porcelain with underglaze cobalt-blue decoration
Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province 江西省, 景德鎮
Ming dynasty, Xuande mark and period, AD1426–35
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Object reference number: RRC39957
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