The decoration on these magnificent jars is of extremely high quality and rather unusual. The painting within each panel has a major theme, which in itself is not unusual, but what is uncommon on these jars is that each panel follows pictorially from the previous one in a continuous scene. Thus the bamboo outlines for the panels appear almost like window frames through which the viewer observes a continuous, elaborate, garden scene. In addition, the landscape vignettes at the necks have been delicately painted in dark sepia enamel to resemble classical Chinese ink paintings; and the prunus blossom and bamboo on the lower part of the shoulders have been painted against a dark ground, as if they are seen illuminated by moonlight against a dark sky.
A pair of related Yongzheng jars of the same size from the A. E. Cumberbatch collection is illustrated by G. C. Williamson, The Book of Famille Rose, London, 1927, plate LV; they were sold in these Rooms, 6 April, 1998, lot 134. Another pair, from the Cleveland Museum of Art, was sold in our New York Rooms, 18 September 2003, lot 388.