The unusual design of the present vase is based on earlier archaic bronze wine jars dating to as early as the Warring States period (475- 221 BC). The raised rope twist pattern seen on the archaic examples was originally intended to imitate the use of rope to carry vessels traditionally used by Chinas northern nomadic people. The two loop handles represented on the current lot as well as the globular form may elude to a traditional fishing basket. An example of a bronze hu-form wine vessel with raised rope-twist pattern, excavated from a Warring States period tomb at Mujiazhuang in Pingshan, Hebei province is illustrated in Warring States Treasures: Cultural Relics form the State of Zhongshan, Hebei Province, Hong Kong, 1999, pp. 144-145, no. 56. Compare also to another bronze hu with similar decoration dated to the Han dynasty, illustrated in Xiqing gujian, juan 21. An almost identical vase to the present lot is in the Shanghai Museum, illustrated in Qingdai Yongzheng - Xuantong guanyao ciqi, Shanghai bowuguan cangpin yanjiu daxi, Shanghai, 2014, fig. 5-22; and another was sold at Sothebys Hong Kong, 26 October 2003, lot 53. The design continued in the proceeding reign period as indicated by a Qianlong-marked example, in the collection of the Palace Museum, Beijing, illustrated in Monochrome Porcelain, the Complete Collection of the Palace Museum, Beijing, vol. 37, Hong Kong, 1999, p. 155, no. 140.