Japanese Antiques by Ichiban Oriental and Asian Art
A Rare Chinese Blanc de Chine Pitcher – Toby Jug

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Chinese: Porcelain: Pre 1910: item # 1081597

Please refer to our stock # 86 when inquiring.

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Ichiban Japanese & Oriental Antiques
Post Office Box 395
Marion, CT 06444-0395

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A Rare Chinese Blanc de Chine Pitcher – Toby Jug
This rare piece of Dehua porcelain blanc de chine is in the shape of a European form of jug known as a Toby jug – see footnote. A similar example is shown in the standard reference book – Bland de Chine, P.J. Donnelly, Faber and Faber, 1969 in Plate 128. On Page 200 of Donnelly’s book he has to this to say about the form:

“Unquestionably the Toby Jug in the Victoria Museum has an English prototype and belongs at best to the middle years of the nineteenth century. The remarkable thing about it is that it should have been copied at all in China”.

The Toby Jug we are offering differs somewhat from that in Donnelly and might well have been a later period – we would guess that ours is from the end of the Qing dynasty, circa 1880-1990. The piece measures 5 5/8” high and is 4 ¾” wide to the end of the handle by 3 ¼” wide side to side. It is in excellent condition with no chips or cracks.

Blanc de Chine (French for "Chinese white") is the traditional European term for a type of white Chinese porcelain, made at Dehua in the Fujian province, otherwise known as Dehua porcelain or similar terms. It has been produced from the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644) to the present day. Footnote - A Toby Jug - also sometimes known as a Fillpot (or Philpot) - is a pottery jug in the form of a seated person, or the head of a recognizable person (often an English king). Typically the seated figure is a heavily-set, jovial man holding a mug of beer in one hand and a pipe of tobacco in the other and wearing 18th century attire: a long coat and a tricorn hat. The tricorn hat forms a pouring spout, often with a removable lid, and a handle is attached at the rear. Jugs depicting just the head and shoulders of a figure are also referred to as Toby Jugs, although these should strictly be called "Character Jugs".

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