Chinese Imperial porcelain famille verte birthday dish, painted with a standing scholar holding a long iron-red staff beside his attendant who holds a fan beside rockwork and plants, encircled by a flat gently everted rim with five butterflies and nineteen magnolia petals and flowers.
6 inches, 15.3 cm diameter.
Six-character mark of Kangxi within a double ring in underglaze blue and of the period, circa 1713.
• Formerly in a Japanese private collection.
• Purchased from Shogado, Kyoto, 23rd November 1989.
• Sold by Marchant, 25th June 1990.
• Formerly in a Hong Kong private collection.
• This dish is one of a pair included by Marchant in their catalogue of Recent Acquisitions, 2009, no. 28, pp. 48-49.
• A similar birthday dish with the attendant holding the staff with a tied gourd with seventeen petals and magnolia flowers on the border is illustrated by Wang Qingzheng in Kangxi Porcelain Wares from the Shanghai Museum Collection, no. 92, p. 155;
a pair with ‘Hundred Bat’ border was sold by Christie’s, New York, in their auction of Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part I & II, Including Property from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections, 24th March 2011, lot no. 1730.
• Two with a different design, one with an equestrian scholar and attendant the other with two ladies and scrolls, with similar borders to this example although bearing Chenghua marks were included by Regina Krahl in Chinese Ceramics from the Meiyintang Collection, Volume Two, nos. 773 & 774, p. 144, where the author notes, “These dishes belong to a group, all of this shape, with the same border design and similarly composed figure scenes in the centre. They are often called birthday plates, since they are supposed to have been made for the Kangxi emperor’s 60th birthday in 1713, but few bear reign marks”.
• A series of these dishes in The Percival David Foundation, the British Museum are illustrated by Lady David in Illustrated
Catalogue of Ch’ing Enamelled Wares, in The Percival David Foundation, of Chinese Art, 1958, section 2, pl. I.
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