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Lot 239 - FAS0624

Buy now for €3,900.00

Lot details

China, 1736-1795. Well potted with deep rounded sides supported on a tapered foot, intricately painted in bright enamels with two panels depicting a tiger hunt, one side showing the capture and the other with the tiger being carried back home, separated by smaller panels depicting beauties in gardens, one depicting two ladies playing with a dog and the other a maiden with her suitor, each panel enclosed by gilt-decorated scrolling vines with stylized bats and dragons, against a brocade-patterned ground.

Provenance: From a good European collection.
Condition: Old wear and firing irregularities, rubbing and losses to enamels, some cracks which have been stabilized with staples, few tiny losses, and a glaze flake below the rim with an associated minor old fill. Overall presenting very well.

Weight: 2,186 g
Dimensions: Diameter 34.5 cm

The rim encircled to the interior by a band of gilt bamboo and enameled floral blossoms, the well finely painted with melons, hibiscus, pomegranate, peony blossoms, and plums, and the foot with a gilt band of lotus scroll.

The imperial hunt of the Qing dynasty was an annual rite of the emperors of China during the Qing dynasty. It was first organized in 1681 by the Kangxi Emperor at the Imperial hunting grounds at Mulan in modern-day Weichang Manchu and Mongol Autonomous County, near what would become the summer residence of the Qing emperors at Chengde. Starting in 1683 the event was held annually at Mulan during the autumn, lasting up to a month. The Qing dynasty hunt was a synthesis of earlier Chinese and Inner Asian hunting traditions, particularly those of the Manchus and Mongols. The emperor himself participated in the hunt, along with thousands of soldiers, imperial family members, and government officials.

Kangxi's son, the Yongzheng Emperor, never hunted at Mulan as an emperor, though he had done so as a prince. Yongzheng regretted his failure to continue the custom, and instructed his sons to maintain their hunting skills. The next emperor to hunt at Mulan was Qianlong, who revived and expanded his grandfather's tradition. Mulan held deep significance for Qianlong, who erected a stele there in 1751. The Qianlong Emperor held over forty hunts in his reign.

To protect him from potentially dangerous game such as bears or tigers, the emperor would be accompanied by a number of troops such as the ‘tiger-gun brigade’. If a tiger was caught, the emperor usually killed it personally, as part of the spectacle demonstrating the bravery and martial skill of the imperial lineage. In 1692, the Kangxi Emperor killed a bear by wounding it with an arrow and finishing it off with a pike. Under the Kangxi Emperor, tiger hunts were conducted by having captive animals brought in cages, and then releasing them into the hunting grounds.

Auction result comparison:
Type: Closely related
Auction: Christie’s New York, 10 April 2019, lot 48
Price: USD 40,000 or approx. EUR 45,000 converted and adjusted for inflation at the time of writing
Description: A rare large tiger and foxhunting bowl, Qianlong period, circa 1775
Expert remark: Compare the closely related subject and decorations with similar restorations, cracks, and chips to the rim. Note this lot is painted to the interior with an English foxhunting scene. Note the size (40.6 cm).


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