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A rare Junyao purple-splashed pear-shaped vase, Yuan Dynasty © 2002-2009 Bonhams 1793 Ltd

The robustly potted vase of elegant form rising from a splayed foot to a rounded body and tall slightly-flaring neck, all under a thick bubble-suffused lavender-blue glaze with vibrant purple splashes, box. 36.9cm (14½in) high. (2). Estimate: £25,000 - 35,000, HK$310,000 - 440,000

Note: The dating of this lot is consistent with the result of a thermoluminescence test, Oxford Authentication Ltd., P102s80.

Jun ware vessels of this slender pear-shaped form are extremely rare, with the majority of junyao pieces being 'open' forms, such a dishes and bowls. A Jin Dynasty pear-shaped vase in the National Palace Museum, Taipei is illustrated in A Panorama of Ceramics in the Collection of the National Palace Museum: Chün Wares, Taipei, 1999, Catalogue no.49. A tall junyao meiping vase dating to the Yuan Dynasty is illustrated in ibid, Catalogue no.109.

The present vase would have taken its form from earlier Song Dynasty examples. See for example one in the Imperial Court Collection, Beijing, illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Porcelain of the Song Dynasty, Hong Kong, 1996, pl. 217; and another in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, illustrated by R.Kerr, Song Ceramics, London, 2004, pp.32-33, pl.21. Another Song Dynasty Junyao vase of this form was sold at Sotheby's London, 16 May 2007, lot 216.

Bonhams. Fine Chinese Art, 5 Nov 2009. New Bond Street www.bonhams.com