AN INLAID GREENISH-WHITE JADE VASE AND COVER
AN INLAID GREENISH-WHITE JADE VASE AND COVER
AN INLAID GREENISH-WHITE JADE VASE AND COVER
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AN INLAID GREENISH-WHITE JADE VASE AND COVER

QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY

Details
AN INLAID GREENISH-WHITE JADE VASE AND COVER
QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY
The group is carved in the form of a vase emerging from rocks, with a pair of scroll-form handles to the neck. It is delicately-inlaid to the sides with spinach-green jade and tourmaline to depict flowering prunus branches and wannianqing with berries. The cover is carved with a band of archaistic scroll, inset with tourmaline to the finial. The stone is of an even pale tone.
10 1/2 in. (26.5 cm.) high
Provenance
Acquired in London in the 1960s & 70s

Brought to you by

Marco Almeida (安偉達)
Marco Almeida (安偉達) SVP, Senior International Specialist, Head of Department

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Lot Essay

Apart from Mughal-style jade vessels inlaid with material such as gold, glass or precious stones, it is very rare to find a Chinese jade vessel inset with other forms of material. However, several examples of jade ruyi sceptres inlaid with other hardstones are known. An imperial white jade ruyi sceptre embellished with various hardstones including pink tourmaline, coral, lapis lazuli, malachite and turquoise is in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, illustrated in Masterworks of Chinese Jade in the National Palace Museum - Supplement, Taipei, 1973, no. 28. Another sceptre which appears to be the pair to the Taipei example was sold at Christie’s Hong Kong, 1 June 2011, lot 3640. Another large sceptre decorated with inlays in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, was included in the 1995 exhibition, Auspicious Ju-I Sceptres of China, illustrated in the Catalogue, no. 22. A pair of smaller ruyi sceptres inlaid with a design of quails and millet is in the Palace Museum, Beijing, illustrated in Jadeware (III), The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum, Hong Kong, 1995, pl. 30.

On the front of the current vessel, the different shades of pink reflected in the tourmaline simulate the delicate petals of prunus flowers. As prunus blossoms in winter, the flower symbolises perseverance and purity, heralding the arrival of Spring. On the other side of the vase, the evergreen plant Rhodea Japonica, known as wannianqing in Chinese, is depicted with spinach green jade mimicking its dark green leaves and pink tourmaline representing its bright red berries. The name wannianqing literally means ‘green for ten thousand years’, and is emblematic of eternal prosperity and longevity.

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