The long inscription on one side of the bottle is an inscription found on a bronze tripod vessel owned by the Northern Song dynasty statesman Wen Yanbo (1006-1097), who was also a renowned archaic bronze collector. The inscription records a nobleman named Wu selecting auspicious metal to make a drinking tripod, which would give him unlimited longevity and his descendants were to treasure and use this vessel infinitely. Wen Yanbo’s ownership of this bronze vessel was recorded by the Song dynasty text on epigraphy Guangchuan shuba written by Song You, a connoisseur active around the late Northern Song dynasty.
The shorter inscription is probably from a Han-dynasty brick. A brick with a similar inscription was in the collection of the Qing-dynasty Yixing master Chen Hongshou (see Ruan Yuan, Liang Zhe jinshi zhi, buyi ?????, ?? (1890), 1.8.). However, it lacks the number ‘two’ at the top. Perhaps the artist gave the lord a raise. Or, since we have not yet located a picture of the original brick’s inscription, perhaps there was some element of it that the artist interpreted as a ‘two’.
It should be noted that, although the cyclical date on this bottle probably refers to the year in which the bottle was made, it could be a date that was on the original brick.
Junong is a relatively common courtesy name, and we do not have enough information to identify the person to whom this bottle is dedicated.