A fine and rare yellow-ground blue and white decorated dish, Zhengde six-character mark within double circles and of the period (1506-1521)

Lot 2805.fine and rare yellow-ground blue and white decorated dish, Zhengde six-character mark within double circles and of the period (1506-1521); 11 3/4 in. (29.5 cm.) diamEstimate HKD 2,000,000 - HKD 3,000,000. Lot sold HKD 5,780,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2010

Finely potted with shallow sides, the centre painted in shades of cobalt-blue with a single branch of pomegranate growing two large blooms in profile, detailed with leaves and buds, the cavetto with four fruiting branches including peach, persimmon and cherry blossom between double-circle borders, the exterior with four lotus sprays, all against a vibrant yellow enamel ground, the slightly concave base with a transparent glaze.

ProvenanceYin Chuan Tang Ltd., Hong Kong
Greenwald Collection, no. 34 

LiteratureThe Spendor of Ancient China, Yin Chuan Tang Ltd., Hong Kong, 1994, no. 35
Gerald M. Greenwald, The Greenwald Collection, Two Thousand Years of Chinese Ceramics, 1996, Catalogue, no. 34  

NoteDishes of this floral design in underglaze-blue against an enamelled yellow ground first appeared in the Xuande period, such as the dish in the Edward Chow and T.Y. Chao collections, sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 18 November 1986, lot 56. The style found much popularity in the mid-Ming period and were produced in dishes of varying sizes with either a pomegranate or a stylised flower that may possibly be identified as gardenia to the interior well. Published examples of this group of yellow-ground dishes bearing the Chenghua, Hongzhi, Zhengde and Jiajing marks are known.

Dishes measuring approximately 29 cm. in diameter appear to be the largest in size. For other Zhengde-marked dishes, cf., a dish in National Palace Museum, Taipei, Illustrated Catalogue of Ming Dynasty Porcelain, Book IV, CAFA, Hong Kong, 1963, pl. 13; a dish in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, illustrated in Oriental Ceramics, The World's Great Collections, 1980, vol. 11, col. pl. 77; in Percival David collection, now at the British Museum, illustrated by R. Scott and R. Kerr, Ceramic Evolution in the Middle Ming Period, 1994, p. 23, no. 26; another is illustrated by J. Ayers, Far Eastern Ceramics in the Victoria and Albert Museum, pl. 154; and from the Manno Museum, Japan, sold at Christie's Hong Kong, One Man's Vision, 28 October 2002, lot 530. 

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Plate with underglaze blue decoration of auspicious fruit branches over yellow ground, Chinese, Ming dynasty, Zhengde period (1505–21). Porcelain, Jingdezhen ware, 5.2 x 29.5 cm (2 1/16 x 11 5/8 in.). The John Pickering Lyman Collection—Gift of Miss Theodora Lyman, 19.1016 © 2017 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

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Dish with flowering pomegranate, Ming dynasty, Zhengde mark and period, AD 1506–1521, Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province. Porcelain with underglaze blue decoration and yellow glaze. Height: 56 mm, Diameter: 297 mm. Sir Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, PDF 779 © 2017 Trustees of the British Museum

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Porcelain dish painted in underglaze blue with yellow glaze, China, Ming dynasty, Zhengde reign period and mark (1506-21), Jingdezhen. Porcelain decorated in underglaze blue and yellow glaze. Diameter: 29.5 cm. Maxwell Brownjohn Bequest, C.50-1965 © Victoria and Albert Museum, London 2017.

Christie's. For Imperial Appreciation: Fine Chinese Ceramics from the Greenwald Collection, 1 December 2010, Hong Kong