Oriental Works of Art
Chinese Framed Ceramic Plaque depicting Peony, C20thPrice: £150
Chinese Bone Netsuke carving of a man holding a musical instrument, early C20thPrice: £25
Japanese Imari Dish with a lobed edge circa 1880Price: £125
Pair of Chinese Soapstone Seals in a fitted box, C20thPrice: £30
Silver Cricket Box, Islamic probably Persian, early C20thPrice: £110
Chinese Bone Inkwell in the form of a Chair, early 20th centuryPrice: £20
Chinese Bronze Mounted Emerald Green Jade pendant, Qing dynastyPrice: £180
It has been suggested that the form of the stone indicates it was intended as a handling token, some sort of a 'pass key', but this may well be apocryphal, although it does indeed sit comfortably when gripped. But the decorative qualities of this piece are clear and the maker clearly saw that this was a stone to be exploited and displayed. A contemporary wearer now would certainly attract attention! The weight and quality of the bronze suggest a reasonably early dating, perhaps to the late eighteenth century.
Chinese Pale Celadon Jade Bangle, probably Nineteenth CenturyPrice: £45
Jade is usually divided into two types, nephrite jade and jadeite jade. The latter is heavier and slightly harder, making it more difficult to scratch. The weight of this piece suggests that we do have jadeite here. The stone was selected for carving on the basis of its attractive appearance and the finish, which bears no trace of machine tooled manufacture, suggests a pre twentieth century dating, but certainty in these matters is notoriously difficult
The size of this piece is unusually large, suggesting that it would have been intended for a male wearer. This too suggests an earlier rather than later time of manufacture. The stone is exceptionally pleasant to the hand and would have been an elegant accompaniment to any wardrobe.
Chinese Silk Embroidered Textile depicting Sages and Boys in a Garden Scene, framed, Twentieth CenturyPrice: £50
The panel is framed by a broad band of dark beige coloured fabric with a repeating diaper design, typical of early twentieth century work. The stitching is bold rather than subtle which again conforms to the period, but the overall effect is both amusing and decorative. The European frame may well be contemporary.
Japanese Arita Jardiniere decorated with flowers and two tassels, Meiji period, circa 1900Price: £350
The Braves and the Fair Men of Letters and Women of Fame of Old China circa 1900Price: £75
Each of the ten characters are described in a double page spread, the right hand containing texts in both Chinese and English and the left hand with hand coloured illustrations on silk , delicately rendered. The book 'works' from right to left and the reverses of the pages are left blank. At each end are fabric covered boards, the front board with a pasted paper inscription in Chinese with a small red seal mark. Other examples are finished with boards in wood, but these are, perhaps, not original or a more deluxe version of the volume.
The illustrations are in excellent condition with the colours still bright. The yellow finish to the paper is original and perhaps intended to give an 'antique' effect. Each of the end boards are very slightly scuffed at the borders. The pages, including the title page and the two end papers, suffer from varying degrees of 'worm hole' perforation. There are also various tears. A selection of illustrations can be seen above and further images (and a more detailed condition report) are, of course, available on request. But these condition issues should not necessarily detract from the charm of the item which is an Englishman's attempt to capture some of the folk lore of China, a land which attracted such popular interest during the Victorian period.