CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN BRUSHPOT

CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN BRUSHPOT

c. 1735 China

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Yongzheng period circa 1730
European Market
Height: 4¾ inches; 12.5cm

A square form footed brush pot brightly enamelled in famille rose with Chinese literary scenes on each face.

The scenes shown here are from The Romance of the Western Chamber, probably the most popular literary source for subjects on Chinese porcelain. The Romance (Hsi hsiang chi) was written by Wang Shih-Fu (1250-1337) and describes a relatively lowly scholar, Zhang Sheng, from Luo Yang who meets the beautiful Cui Yingying, daughter of a former Prime Minister, in a temple and he is immediately smitten. However the temple is then besieged by a violent bandit called Sun Feihu who marries Cui by force. Cui's mother offers her daughter's hand in marriage to whomever can rescue her.
With the help of friends Zhang eventually defeats Sun and claims his prize. But his potential mother-in-law reneges on her promise and demands that Zhang now pass the Official Examination for the Civil Service before he will be allowed to marry her daughter.
The play ends with their tearful parting, 'hearts entwined' as Zhang sets off westwards for his studies and Cui is carried eastwards in a cart - though the pain of parting is tempered with the knowledge that eventually they will be reunited.
Stock Code
8182
Medium
PORCELAIN
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