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    Sale 1977

    The Meriem Collection Important Chinese Snuff Bottles, Part II

    19 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 245


    JINGDE ZHEN KILNS, 1800-1850

    Price Realised  


    JINGDE ZHEN KILNS, 1800-1850
    The bottle molded in the round with realistic detail, the insect's eyes and legs painted in black, its wings in blue enamel and its thorax highlighted with brown enamel stripes, coral stopper
    2 15/16 in. (7.5 cm.) high

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    The group of molded porcelain cicada-form snuff bottles to which this example belongs first appeared in the early nineteenth century. For another very similar example from the Caretti Collection, see H. Moss, Chinese Snuff Bottles No. 5, p. 59, fig. 43. See other examples and versions in Chinese Snuff Bottles No. 4, p. 5, top, center; and R. Hall, Snuff Bottles IX, no. 8. The molded porcelain model may have evolved from jade cicada-form bottles which were popular at the Court during the eighteenth century. See Moss, Graham and Tsang, The Art of the Chinese Snuff Bottle: The J & J Collection, nos. 7 and 8; and Moss, Graham and Tsang, A Treasury of Chinese Snuff Bottles, Vol. 1, Jade, nos. 58 and 59.

    The cicada is a symbol of immortality because it has a long life cycle of up to seventeen years. It also became a symbol of extended youth and of happiness on account of its joyous chirping.

    Special Notice

    Prospective purchasers are advised that several countries prohibit the importation of property containing materials from endangered species, including but not limited to coral, ivory and tortoiseshell. Accordingly, prospective purchasers should familiarize themselves with relevant customs regulations prior to bidding if they intend to import this lot into another country.


    Robert Hall, London.


    Hong Kong Museum of Art, Chinese Snuff Bottles, 1977, no. 108.


    Hong Kong Museum of Art, 15 October-26 November 1977.
    Canadian Craft Museum, Vancouver, 1992.