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Vase with a rose pink ground

Vase with a rose pink ground

We purchased a pair of these at an estate auction some 20 years ago in a small rural village in Virginia, about 75 miles from DC. The attached pictures show the vase as well as the mark.

They were covered in a hard dark (greenish?) deposit, as if they could have spent many years out-of-doors (I don't think they were nicotine stains, but could have been!).

They stand 14" tall and both are very similar but not identical.

The design features are alike but placements vary. The glaze is of various colors and quite thick over almost the entire vase, but there are some smaller translucent sections that (seem to) allow detail lines to show through.

A Chinese speaking student here at the University said that the mark indicated that they were made between 1862-74 and the marks do appear similar to those you illustrate for Tongzhi in the Qing period. I am guessing from your other information, that they were made for the southeast Asia export trade.

Any information that you could shed on these would be truly appreciated. Are they common? Of any particular value?

Late Qing dynasty probably from around 1860-1900

Your vases might belong to the 1860-1900 period, which were a troubled period in China due to the uprisings followed the "Opium War". This involved the Jiangxi province and the area around the porcelain city of Jingdezhen and caused several changes in the porcelain industry which I feel are reflected in the design of these vases.

We know that the porcelain potters did the best they could to support themselves and somewhere here I feel your vases could belong, with their interesting mixture of Famille Verte decoration against a background of typical Famille Rose pink ground enamel.

A few features points at a still later date though. Specifically the Fu-dogs, who embellish the neck and the unusual four character seal mark with a single frame, saying "Tongzhi Nian Zhi". This mark taken at face value would date this piece to the Tongzhi (1862-1874) period of the Qing dynasty, but it is not an Imperial mark and the use of a single frame around a four character mark is a more typical feature of marks from the first half of the 20th century then from the mid- to late 19th century.

The vases are nice and very interesting pieces and by no means "common" but their value are still somewhat limited depending on how their decoration would match the home of a prospective buyer.

I am no good at prices, but I feel you could expect these vases to bring somewhere around US $200-500 at an auction.

Thank you for your interest.

Best regards,
Jan-Erik Nilsson