38. M5176



Chinese qingbai glazed box and cover, he, of melon form, fluted in twelve segments with naturalistic fold-over stalk, covered overall and on the interiors in a pale sky-blue glaze pooling in the folds, the base and rims unglazed revealing the high-fired white biscuit body, the rims of the cover and base each with an incised line to indicate correct alignment.

2 5/8 inches, 6.8 cm diameter; 2 inches, 5.1 cm high.

Southern Song dynasty, Jingdezhen, Jiangxi Province, 12th – 13th century.


Provenance & Additional Information

  • From a private Swedish collection.
  • Included by Marchant in their exhibition of Chinese Ceramics Tang to Song, 2022, no. 38, pp. 102-103.
  • A similar box and cover in the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco is illustrated by He Li in Chinese Ceramics, A New Comprehensive Study, no. 289, p. 161, where the author notes boxes of this form were mostly used for cosmetic materials, powder, lotion or incense and are sometimes inscribed; another is illustrated in colour by Gakuji Hasebe in Sekai Toji Zenshu, Ceramic Art of the World, Volume 12, Song Dynasty, no. 153, p. 168; another in the Tokyo National Museum is illustrated by Mary Tregear in Song Ceramics, no. 297, p. 222.


Excellent, tiny nicks to the rim of the cover, a short scratch to the rim of the box, firing imperfections including a clear glazed natural flaw and an original chip stuck to the lower section with double join marks.