Collection online

jar

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1965,0726.1

  • Description

    Porcelain jar and cover with underglaze blue decoration. This massive ovoid jar has a short neck with a rolled out-turned rim and a domed overhanging cover with a large finial knob. It is painted in underglaze blue with four archers in oval cartouches, each identically represented in great detail wearing a plumed turban with a trailing end, long moustache and beard, and a buttoned coat with a scarf tied round the waist, holding a bow and arrow and carrying a quiver with further arrows on his back. The four panels partly cover a landscape border with Chinese figures, banana and other plants, stupa-like structures and Western-style houses. The rest of the jar is decorated with exotic flower scrolls with tulips, carnations and other stylized blooms. The cover is decorated to match, with four panels with Chinese figures between tulips, and with a landscape scene on the knob.

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  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 1620-1644 (circa)
  • Production place

  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 48.5 centimetres (jar with lid)
    • Weight: 10.2 kilograms (jar with lid)
    • Diameter: 19 centimetres (lid)
    • Height: 11.4 centimetres (lid)
    • Weight: 0.85 kilograms (lid)
    • Diameter: 29.5 centimetres (jar)
    • Height: 39.1 centimetres (jar)
    • Weight: 9.35 kilograms (jar)
  • Curator's comments

    Harrison-Hall 2001:
    The archers are probably copied from a Persian source. Similar figures are depicted on Persian textiles as well as in Persian paintings and drawings of the first half of the seventeenth century. It has been suggested, in view of the appearance of the moustache, turban and sash revealing a pot belly, that the most probable original source for these figures is drawings in the Qazvin of Isfahan style of c. 1580-1620. The Chinese potter probably followed a Mughal copy of a Safavid drawing. Pieces such as this jar were, however, not necessarily made for the Middle Eastern market, where so far no comparable example has come to light. Another jar of this type was in the collection of Queen Mary II (reigned 1688-94) at Hampton Court Palace, south west of London, which is documented in an inventory of 1696-7 that is preserved in the Public Records Office. An almost identical jar where the cartouches, however, contain Chinese figures in Chinese landscapes, is in the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen, Kassel, Germany.Harrison-Hall and Krahl 1994:
    The non-Chinese flower motifs are derived from earlier, more formal designs like those seen on another jar, BM 1963.0520.4, but are here painted in thin outlines with stippled details as if imitating the stitches of embroidery.

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  • Bibliography

    • Harrison-Hall 2001 12:74 bibliographic details
    • Rogers 1983a 147 bibliographic details
    • Krahl & Harrison-Hall 1994 9 bibliographic details
  • Location

    Not on display

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited:

    1994, Taiwan, National Museum of History, Ancient Chinese Trade Ceramics
    2012 22 Jun-2013 6 Jan, Beijing, National Museum of China, 'Passion for Porcelian'

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1965

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    1965,0726.1

A massive porcelain ovoid jar with short neck and rolled out-turned rim, and domed overhanging cover with a large finial knob. Painted in underglaze blue with four archers in oval cartouches, each identically represented in great detail wearing a plumed turban with a trailing end, long moustache and beard, and a buttoned coat with scarf tied around the waist, holding a bow and arrow and carrying a quiver with further arrows on its back. The panels partly cover a landscape border with Chinese figures, banana and other plants, stupa-like structures and Western-style houses. The body of the jar decorated with exotic flower scrolls with tulips, carnations and other stylized blooms. The cover similarly decorated, with four panels with Chinese figures between tulips, and with a landscape scene on the knob.

A massive porcelain ovoid jar with short neck and rolled out-turned rim, and domed overhanging cover with a large finial knob. Painted in underglaze blue with four archers in oval cartouches, each identically represented in great detail wearing a plumed turban with a trailing end, long moustache and beard, and a buttoned coat with scarf tied around the waist, holding a bow and arrow and carrying a quiver with further arrows on its back. The panels partly cover a landscape border with Chinese figures, banana and other plants, stupa-like structures and Western-style houses. The body of the jar decorated with exotic flower scrolls with tulips, carnations and other stylized blooms. The cover similarly decorated, with four panels with Chinese figures between tulips, and with a landscape scene on the knob.

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