Large & Rare Chinese Ming Dynasty Blue & White Porcelain Bowl - Wanli Shipwreck
This large porcelain bowl with a straight mouth rim was made at the Jingdezhen kilns, Jiangxi province in the north-east of China during the last years of the Wanli reign (1573 - 1620) or possibly the Taichang reign (1620) or the Tianqi reign (1621 - 1627); it was recovered from the "Wanli shipwreck" that has been dated to c. 1625. The outer wall is attractively decorated with various floral patterns with a scrolling leaf pattern border around the rim. The inner surface has a similar floral emblem at its centre and a wide border pattern including trees, pagodas and two men in boats. There is some "fritting" to the rim edge, caused during manufacture, as is often the case with such ware of this period.
Diameter 21.75 cm (8.5 inches). Professional repairs were performed to many examples of porcelain from the Wanli shipwreck prior to being released for sale; hairlines and minor chips and frits to the rim have been stabilised and/or filled.
For information: the "Wanli Shipwreck" is believed to have been a small Portuguese merchantman; it sank off the east coast of West Malaysia around 1625. The site was excavated in 2004 and much of the excavated cargo was sold by the prestigious "China Guardian" auction house in Beijing in late 2005, with some surprisingly high prices being achieved.
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