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A bottle and itís big mate (1)

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Author Topic: A bottle and itís big mate (1)  (Read 3211 times)
Fiveroosters aka clayandbrush
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« on: October 06, 2012, 07:48:59 am »

Dear all,
I think that this too could end up in an interesting thread. To whom is wondering about the title I can say that after showing the bottle I will show another piece related to it. And the number (1) is because I intend to start alter another similar thread.
Well, this bottle is one of the group of bottles that I bought from an old collector. It is decorated in iron red and black with 18 deer, one monkey and one spider net.
I believe that it is a rare decoration, and would like very much to know if some of you have already seen a similar decoration before. In fact a similar motif that is most commonly seen has deer, a monkey and wasps. Here we have instead a spider net in place of the wasps.
Kind regards
Giovanni


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Joey Silver / Si Zhouyi 義周司
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« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2012, 11:13:10 am »

Giovanni,
   I love it! How tall is it? Does it have a stopper? Where did you get it? Etc.
I tried to compare it to a 'deer' bottle I have (#75) and to bottles with gibbons (#69 & 70).
Not even close to the same styles.
Joey
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Joey Silver (Si Zhouyi 義周司), collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2012, 12:30:51 pm »

Dear Joey,
if a great collector like you does love it, then I am happy! I believe that you will like this thread. The bottle is exactly 8 cm high. It has no stopper unfortunately. I bought it from an old collector in Milan. I said the story in my first post in this forum, presenting myself. I had the chance to met that gentleman and he sold me all his collection, including about 80 bottles. At that time I bought the bottles for investment. Three of them was sold through Bonhams. One of them, a basket shaped bottle in white jade, gave me 1,6 times the total investment. The nicest one (in my opinion) of the whole lot was an IP agate bottle, painted by Wang Xisan, which was one of the three bottles sold at Bonhams and I knew later that was purchased by Hugh Moss. Other few bottles was sold at Nagel, and the lesser valuable I sold to a friend. Of the lot sent to Nagel, 17 bottles was not sold and I took them back. At that point I decided to keep them and so it start my collection. Now I am trying to take back some of the bottles that I sold to the friend. That collector was purchasing in the '70s. This and the bottle with the two dragons on a carved fan pattern are the two bottles that I am posting from that original group of bottles that are the core of my small collection. I will post each one of them.
Kind regards
Giovanni

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Steven
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« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2012, 04:32:45 pm »

Hi Giovanni,

I love this bottle too, the well finished foot rim, pure white clay, and light overglaze red color reminds me Yongzhen period(1722ó1735).
The theme is rear,but its still traditional theme which we talked about recently on the IP monkey bottle.

But this one is kind of different for sure,  spider is pronounced 'zhu' ,and spider and monkey together ' zhu hou' is consider to be Marquis as well.but in most of the case the  wasps or bees will be together with Monkey and consider to be"To be Marquis", and many deer can be consider to be'high rank'.

I am looking forward to seeing the big mate 2.

Steven

 
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« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2012, 04:49:12 pm »

Dear Steven and all,
I see why the bottle recall you Yongzheng. Unfortunately it is not, it must be Guangxu or early Republic, I am not sure of that and with the help of you experts on bottles may be we will date it. Now it is really time to go to sleep here. Tomorrow I will post the big mate of this bottle and I believe that this thread will evolve in an interesting way. Sorry for let you waiting bt it takes time to me to write down the post that I want to do.
Warm regards
Giovanni
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Steven
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« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2012, 05:50:06 pm »

Thanks Giovanni,

I found a pair of early republic porcelain wares with the same subject. 


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« Last Edit: October 06, 2012, 07:16:30 pm by Steven » Report Spam   Logged

Joey Silver / Si Zhouyi 義周司
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« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2012, 06:33:56 pm »

Wow, Steven! You just earned your PI badge back. Wonderful comparison with the bottle.
Incidentally, the Pinyin spelling of the Emperor's reign- name is Yongzheng.
Joey
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Joey Silver (Si Zhouyi 義周司), collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

Steven
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« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2012, 07:15:33 pm »

Wow, Steven! You just earned your PI badge back. Wonderful comparison with the bottle.
Incidentally, the Pinyin spelling of the Emperor's reign- name is Yongzheng.
Joey

Dear Joey,

You got me once again! Embarrassed
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George
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« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2012, 10:25:27 pm »

Wonderful bottle Giovanni !  Smiley

The deer are beautifully painted, and especially like the posture of the monkey..

Is that dark area suppose to be a spider web ?  Looks like it, but not sure why the black center area.
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« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2012, 02:29:54 am »

Good morning guys.
Wow Steven (corrected: sorry I did write Peter), that's the only one reference that I have seen beside my ones. Where did you found them? I will appreciate to know if you have more information about that two pieces. An auction perhaps?
Dear Joey, sorry but I am not able to understand what you are referring to with the Yongzheng name.
Dear George, that black spot is indeed the spider at the centre of the net. The net is faint visible and the legs of the spider even less. The black lines are almost completely vanished. If you look at a certain angle you may see two small dots below the black spot which are the spider's eyes.
I am preparing the post with the reference. I am not able to insert pictures within the text, I can only add all the picures at the end of the post. Is there the possibility to insert the pictures within the text?
Kind regards
Giovanni

« Last Edit: October 08, 2012, 06:24:24 am by Fiveroosters » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2012, 03:51:53 am »

Dear all,
I am posting here the big mate. Here below you will see an hat stand decorated with the same motif, which I bought well before the snuff bottle. At the time, I did post the hat stand in the porcelain forum of which I am a member, because I did not find any reference with the same exact motif. And no reference were found there too. So you can imagine my surprise when I found the bottle with the same motif! Exactly the same, even if the bottle is much smaller, the deer are 18 on both pieces. There must be a reason, no? But the closest interpretation of the meaning that I have found is the one with wasps instead of the spider.
Well, may be a bit long post now but I hope an interesting one. When I purchased the hat stand, I saw that it was Guangxu or Republic but was not able to be more precise on that. I also noticed that the style of the deer, if considered out of the whole ware contest, had a familiarity with the 18th century style. So I did post the hat stand in that forum as a quiz, posting firstly only pictures of details, like the two first pictures here below. Well dear Steven (edited: I did wrongly write Peter instead of Steven, sorry) you was not so off because there too some member thought that they was belonging from a Yongzheng ware. The three pictures after the two of the details are showing the hat stand.
On the pictures 6 and 7 two further details. Well, coming back to the discussion on the porcelain forum, there too was not possible to be absolutely sure about the dating. There are great chances that it is Guangxu and not yet really Republic for the following reasons.
-   One of the more expert administrators there said that in his opinion, according to the style, and other details the hat stand is late Guangxu, with a scarce possibility to be very early Republic.
-   Look at the picture number 8. At about three oíclock and ten oíclock you can see a couple of iron spots in the paste. That is most often seen on Guangxu ware. Usually Republic ware has a pure white paste.
-   The apocryphal mark seen in the same picture. You can see that it is within a double square frame which corners are all canted. It has been said there that, although not a sure rule, most often similar marks in the Qing period are canted, while during Republic the inner square frame is really square. See the 9th picture. The two upper marks are Qing m&p marks, the two lower ones are Republic.
-   Another feature most often seen under Guangxu is that the iron red is clotted. For your ease the last picture is showing the enlarged detail of the monkey on the snuff bottle, where you can see what is meant by clotted red.
So, if it is true that ďone clue is a clue but three clues make a evidenceĒ, the hat stand is Guangxu.
Now how should we date the bottle? My feeling is that it too is Guangxu, because of the style which is very similar to that of the hat stand and because of the clotted red. The painting style of the two hat stands found by Peter are much pointing toward Republic in my opinion and so they are a good reference for dating the bottle. Do you agree with all this?
I have a further question. Eight cm high is a good size. Do you think that this could be a table bottle?
Giovanni


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« Last Edit: October 07, 2012, 06:23:10 am by Fiveroosters » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2012, 04:04:57 am »

The two companions together



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« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2012, 12:18:09 pm »


Giovanni,

A wonderful tread which is informative and providing some great thought.  Thank you for passing along the information and insight.  Now to the small bottle. When I first saw it I did not think it was a snuff bottle at all, but a miniature vase.  I still think that. My parents were oriental collectors for over three decades and I saw a lot of export porcelain ďstuffĒ in those years, of which were a number of these small/miniature meiping vases.  Not to say it was not later used as a snuff bottle, but I contend it was designed as a vase or jarlet.  This opinion is just based on past observations.

Charll
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« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2012, 02:45:26 pm »

Dear Charll,
That is a very interesting point, thank you for raising it. I have wondered about that many times. At the end, my conclusion is that most probably it is a bottle because of the inner part of the neck. I have a small series of miniature vases, and I must say that they follow the shape of the bigger ones in all details. If the mouth is flared, then the inner part too is follows the curve of the outer wall. Instead this has a cylindrical hole and the upper lip is more flat, which seems to better accomodate the cork and the stopper. Here below are pictures showing the comparison. Besides that, I think that up to now I have only seen such small vases in monochrome or in under glaze b&w, but I havenít seen all them of course. But the question is open, and this is also the reason why I did ask if this can be a table bottle.
Kind regards
Giovanni


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« Reply #14 on: October 07, 2012, 03:48:29 pm »

Charll,
   My first reaction, because of the height, was that it was a small vase. But then I looked at the mouth. It is a straight shaft, not curving lip like a vase would have.
  I agree with Giovanni, it is a snuff bottle, or at least, a medicine bottle (what is the difference, you ask?   I don't know)
Joey
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« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2012, 05:17:52 am »

Dear Giovanni,

Firstly, I must tell you how much I have enjoyed reading this thread. You always present very thought-provoking discussions. Secondly, I have to agree with you and Joey, that based on the mouth and lip of your 8cm high 'jar' it is indeed designed to accept a stopper. I cannot say if the original intention was to carry snuff or some other medicinal compound, but that issue is largely irrelevant, because snuff was regarded as a form of medicine in 18th and 19th century China. It is clearly a "container", not a vase.

To move away from function and dating, I'd like to return to the subject-matter of the design. Steven has brought to our attention that the combination of "spider and monkey" is similar to the better known rebus of "bees (or wasps) and monkey". I have a porcelain bottle that has (for good measure, I suppose) a spider and bees, and a monkey. I am guessing that reinforces the wish "to be a Marquis". Steven, can you confirm if that is so? And one final question......is there any significance in the number of deer being eighteen (18)? It does seem a very specific number on both examples illustrated on this post. My own bottle, by the way, only has one deer.

Tom
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« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2012, 06:54:01 am »

Dear Tom,
Thank you. In ďHidden meanings in Chinese ArtĒ by Terese Tse Bartholomew the spider is only mentioned as a spider descending from the spider net, saying that it is a symbol of joy. But both the spiders on the hat stand and on the bottle are firmly placed on its net.
Instead, a monkey on the pine with deer and wasp means ďMay you receive high rank and emolumentĒ. Since the monkey name is a pun for high rank and the wasp stay for emolument, how knows we can translate all this as ďMay you receive high rank and joyĒ? Just a supposition from someone not educated on this.
I agree with you, the fact that on the hat stand there are 18 deer may seem casual at first glance, but especially because it has not been easy to accommodate 18 deer on a small bottle, the number must not be casual. There must be a meaning there too.
As for dating, I like to date the bottle to Guangxu/very early Republic for the reasons explained above, unless proven on the contrary. My feeling is that, if later, the deer should not have that painting style. Just feeling.
Kind regards
Giovanni
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« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2012, 08:03:20 am »

In Jewish tradition, 'eighteen' = 'Life' (the Hebrew for life is 'Chai', written 'Chet' 'Yod'; Chet = 8 and Yod=10 in Hebrew numerology; thus 18=Life.
   Maybe these pieces with 18 deer were made for Chinese Jews! Wink Grin Cheesy
Just joking!
Joey
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David
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« Reply #18 on: November 10, 2014, 02:15:04 am »

Didn't think I can add something useful before I start reading the books  Grin

One side is:
18 in chinese can be thought of sounding like, going to be rich. Deer can sound like "lu" for money/income.

Another way is:
18 is 9+9. So, 99 sounds like long long in chinese so, going to be rich for a long long time.

So kind of fits with becoming a high ranked official.

If you choose to have deer as symbol of longevity, then 99-> longevity for a long long time.

Well, my 2 cents.

David
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« Reply #19 on: November 10, 2014, 02:17:11 am »

As lucky or unlucky number[edit]
In Chinese tradition, the number 18 is normally 十八 (shŪ bā), but it can also be read as 幺八 (yāo bā), which sounds like 要发 (yŗo fā), meaning that one is going to prosper. Thus, floors numbered "18" are often very expensive in China.[2][citation needed]

I recall hearing that before and confirmed here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/18_(number)

David
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