M. FORD CREECH ANTIQUES & FINE ARTS
VERY RARE CHINESE EXPORT SEMI-EGGSHELL MINIATURE
(TOY) TEABOWL & SAUCER
"VALENTINE PATTERN", Early Qianlong, c1745
(Most Images Are Oversized for
painted in famille rose enamels and gilt with a garland-draped breadfruit
the garland ending in two kissing doves, sided by 2
flaming hearts on the altar of love,
a pair of dogs (fidelity) and three
sheep, the foreground with Cupid’s bow and a quiver of
a pair of spears with a corded bag, and a gilt ring on a pillow, to
each side with a gentleman,
in the background mountains and a
bird in flight,
within a roundel of black, by iron-red bordered gilt, and
black-bordered green, within a foliate scroll
border painted en
camaieu puce, gilt-edged rim; the teabowl painted en suite,
the puce foliate
border above a black-bordered green border,
The "Valentine" Pattern is
dedicated to love and was originally given to
on his circumnavigation of the world in 1743 –
one of the most arduous
voyages in the history of sea adventures.
in 1740, its original purpose was to attack Spanish
possessions in South
America during the war of Jenkins’ Ear.
The mission failed,
losing both ships and crew – the crew even mutinying off the
west coast of Chili (1741).
Anson eventually collected all
that remained onto his ship Centurion, and with
continued westward across the Pacific.
Excessive scurvy and ship leakages forced a refuge on the
small island of Tinian, near
There his crews found (and brought back) the
of later fame in the Bounty’s mutiny.
Continuing the westward journey, in 1743, he harbored at Canton,
where he and his men were
instrumental in saving Canton from a fire
which would otherwise have destroyed the entire
In recognition, a porcelain
service – known as “Valentine Pattern” - was
commissioned for Anson,
depicting items drawn from the
sketches of his resident artist on that voyage.
For More on Commodore Anson's Voyage, please click here
Condition : Excellent, the teabowl with one
tiny nick to the interior gilt on the rim
(Please note - these images are
oversized for inspection)
Saucer 3-3/16" Diameter; Teabowl
1-1/16” High x 1-7/8” Diameter
exact purpose of these small porcelains is debated. Some report them as
being used for medicine.
They are often described as “toy” porcelains, being use in period doll houses, as well as
display in wall cabinets.
Whatever the original concept, they hold a unique charm among early Chinese ceramics.
Collecting miniatures was a favorite among
Among the influences were the miniature Mogul painting that
flowed into Eastern Europe in the 1500’s.
affection moved quickly to The Netherlands and thence into England during
the reign of Mary II (1689 -1694).
It is said that Her
rooms at Kensington Palace were decorated with
many small vases on displayed
on gilded brackets and on little ledges, and on any
and every available surface.
Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) stated that
"The Queen (Mary) brought in the custom or
humour, as I may call it, of furnishing houses with China-ware,
which increased to a strange degree afterwards,
piling their China upon the tops of cabinets, scrutores,
chymney-piece, to the top of the ceilings, and every setting
up of shelves for their China-ware,
where they wanted such places, till it became a grievance in the experience of
and even injurious to their families and estates".
also read that the some of first museums on the Continent were begun to
house these small porcelain collections,
their owners died and wanted the valuable porcelains to remain safe and
honored in time.
I cannot substantiate that information, but it
is indeed an interesting concept.
OUR COLLECTION OF MINIATURE
for More Information on Miniature Chinese Export Ceramics
Diminutive Qianlong Rouge de Fer Coffee
or Chocolate Cup, c1770
Pair of Kangxi Miniature Rouleau Vases, c1662-1722
Rare Pair of Yongzheng Semi-Eggshell "Cockerel" Teabowls &
Rare Semi-Eggshell "Valentine Pattern" Teabowl & Saucer, c1745
Pair of Ming Iron Red Painted Teabowls, c1590 - 1620
Qianlong Figure of a Monkey, c1750
Qianlong "Cockerel" Coffee Cup, c1750-60
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M. Ford Creech Antiques & Fine Arts / 581
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TN 38117 / USA /
Wed.-Sat. 11-6, or by appointment