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Lot 209. A pair of archaic bronze ritual wine vessels and covers, hu, Warring States Period  (475-221 BC); 32.5cm (in) high. Estimate HK$ 800,000 - 1,200,000 (€ 91,000 - 140,000)Unsold. © Bonhams 2001-2021

Of pear-shaped form, the sides crisply cast from the rim to lower belly with four parallel wide bands of stylised dragons, each dragon further decorated with angular S curls, the shoulder set with a pair of relief moulded tigers holding loose rings, one of the vessel's foot encircled by a combed braid, the cover evenly set with three lug handles surrounding scrolling archaic motifs in the centre, the mottled grey-green patina with some azurite and malachite encrustation, boxes.

ProvenanceWarren King, also known as T. Y. King, Hong Kong
Meiyintang Collection, Rapperswil, Switzerland
Christian Deydier, Paris, France.

Illustrated and PublishedT.Wang, Chinese Bronzes from the Meiyintang Collection, London, 2009, pp.100-101, no.45
C.Deydier, Chinese Bronzes from the Meiyintang Collection, Hong Kong, 2013, vol. 1, p.77, no.45
C.Deydier, Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronze Vessels, Hong Kong, 2013, pp.50-51, no.16.

Note: The present pair of wine vases hu still retain some characteristics from hu in the Spring and Autumn period, such as the tiger-shaped handles and the motif of the combed braid. Compare with a related bronze hu in the Shangxi Provincial Museum, Spring and Autumn Period, which is illustrated in The Complete Collection of Bronzes Unearthed in China, Beijing, 2019, vol.4, pl.343. Compare also with a related bronze hu, late Spring and Autumn Period, in the Changye County Museum of Shanxi, which is illustrated in the Zhongguo qingtongqi quanji (Complete Collection of Chinese Archaic Bronzes), Beijing, 1995, vol.8, pl.75.

Bonhams. Fine Chinese Works of Art, Hong Kong, 2 Dec 2021