Lot 355. A carved agate snuff bottle, 1780-1850. Estimate USD 5,000 - USD 7,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2017
The bottle is finely carved through variously colored markings of the semi-transparent brownish-grey stone with a spider lowering itself towards rocks from a peach-laden branch on one side, while a long-tailed bird perches beside another peach borne on a branch on the reverse. 2 in. (5.1 cm.) high, glass stopper
Provenance: Asian Art Studio, Los Angeles, 2011.
Ruth and Carl Barron Collection, Belmont, Massachusetts, no. 5219.
Note: The common word for spider is zhizhu. In Hidden Meanings in Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 2006, p. 56, Terese Tse Bartholomew points out that the appearance of a spider indicates a happy event about to transpire, and that the name of the spider is a pun for "know" (zhi), making it a welcome sight to the viewer.
Christie's. The Ruth and Carl Barron Collection of Fine Chinese Snuff Bottles: Part IV, 15 March 2017, New York, Rockefeller Center