The form of this rare blue and white vase is one which would have been difficult for the potter to make. It is most likely that the form first entered China from the West and that the prototype was either glass or metal. While the form is rare, it is nevertheless one which seems first to appear in Chinese porcelain in the early 15th century and to have been copied during the Qing dynasty. The fascination that this form had for the Qing emperors is demonstrated by the fact that one of Giuseppe Castiglione's still-life paintings, of flowers in a vase, depicts a blue and white faceted vase of this form.
Similar vases with Yongzheng marks and the same decoration but on a yellow enamel ground are published, one in the Baur Collection, illustrated in the Catalogue, vol. IV, no. A577, and another sold in the Imperial Sale in our Hong Kong Rooms, 27 April 1997, lot 67. See also a vase of the same shape but with a ge-type glaze, included in the National Palace Museum, Taibei, Special Exhibition of Ch'ing Dynasty Monochrome Porcelain, 1981, catalogue no. 83.