A similar example from the Alfred Pillsbury Collection, now in the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, is illustrated by Max Loehr in Ritual Vessels of Bronze Age China, p. 156, no. 70. Like the present example, the decoration is divided into horizontal areas separated by narrow bands with a plain area around the lower body and panels of decoration filling the foot. However, the present example is decorated along the vertical edges not left plain. Compare also the example from the Eugene Meyer Collection illustrated by Pope et.al., in The Freer Chineses Bronzes, vol.I, Washington 1967, p. 513, pl. 94, where the similar decoration is divided into a lattice configuration rather than horizontally, and where the finials are of a simpler hooked circular design. The authors suggest that the technique involves cutting out the surface of the bronze and inlaying it with copper, silver and malachite. Compare also the cover with bird finial brackets on a fanghu sold in these Rooms, 11 June 1990, lot 28.
The result of Oxford Authentication Ltd. thermoluminescence test no. C101x84 is consistent with the dating of this lot.