A fine small green-enamelled 'Dragon' dish, Zhengde six-character mark in underglaze blue within a double circle and of the period (1506-1521)

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Lot 3238. A fine small green-enamelled 'Dragon' dish, Zhengde six-character mark in underglaze blue within a double circle and of the period (1506-1521); 6 1/4 in. (15.8 cm.) diam. Estimate HKD 1,000,000 - HKD 1,500,000Price realised HKD 1,120,000© Christie's Images Ltd 2014 

The central medallion is incised with a dragon amid wispy clouds and flames, the biscuit and details having been picked-out in green enamel. The reverse is decorated in a similar technique with two further green dragons racing above an incised wave ground, Japanese wood box, Japanese wood box.

Provenance: Japanese private collection
Mayuyama & Co., Tokyo, Japan

Note: It is very rare to find Zhengde green dragon dishes in this small size, as most of them exceed 17 cm. in diametre. Compare to a similar example in this size in the Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm, illustrated by Wirgin, 'Ming Wares from the Lauritzen Collection', B.M.F.E.A., no. 37, 1965, pl. 7, no. 11; and three Zhengde dishes of larger size in the British Museum, illustrated in Ming Ceramics in the British Museum, nos. 8:33, 8:34 (18 cm.), no. 8:35 (17.8 cm.). Two further dishes of the larger type were included by Margaret Medley in Ming Polychrome Wares in the Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art, where the author illustrates the underside of one, A725 with a similar large Zhengde mark. 

Christie's. Important Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, 26 November 2014, Hong Kong, HKCEC Grand Hall