This bowl was included in the exhibition, 'The House of Jades', sourced from private collectors, organised by Stanley Nott as a charity drive for funds in aid of the American Red Cross and the British War Relief during the 1940-1941 Season in Palm Beach. It was later sold in these Rooms, 1 April 1992, lot 1190 and illustrated on the cover, establishing at the time a world record auction price for jade.
No other bowls of this size and comparable quality of the material are known in private and public collections; and the original rough stone would have been of considerable size. This type of bowl is known as a 'marriage' bowl, and such bowls, with their carefully chosen auspicious decoration, were popular in Qing dynasty China. However, the size and fine colour of the current example are exceptionally rare. A number of smaller vessels, sharing with the present example the shallow, flat-based form and elaborate protruding handles from which loose rings hang, have been preserved in the Imperial collection of the Palace Museum, Beijing. These smaller vessels are usually described as brushwashers. Compare two such bowls illustrated in Zhongguo Yuqi Quanji, vol. 6, no. 314 for a white jade example with very similar handles as the present lot; and no. 316, a celadon jade bowl with flowers on the interior and comparable handles.
The graceful rendition of the flowers and wannianqing, a sturdy evergreen with clusters of berries, may be compared with that on a pair of fine white jade deep bowls, both sold in these Rooms, the first on 28 October 2002, lot 636, and the second sold 7 July 2003 (Catalogue dated 28 April 2003), lot 558. As with the pair of bowls, on the present lot, the exterior has been left largely undecorated to give emphasis to the purity of the stone, while concentrating the skilful carving of naturalistic flora to the centre of the vessel.