Meriem Collection Sale One / 656

The Meriem Collection. Lot 656

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**A WELL-CARVED RUBY-RED GLASS SNUFF BOTTLE
ATTRIBUTED TO THE PALACE WORKSHOPS, BEIJING, 1730-1780
Of flattened spherical form with wide mouth and flat lip and recessed flat oval foot
surrounded by a footrim formed by the tail of one of the chi dragons, carved with two
chi dragons flying amidst continuous clouds, one a fierce beaked dragon, the other, on
the opposite main side, with single horn shown in a more benign attitude, glass stopper
with silver collar
6.7 cm. high
$6,000-8,000

P R O V E N A N C E :
Robert Hall, London.
E X H I B I T E D :
Canadian Craft Museum, Vancouver, 1992.

Ruby glass was a staple at the Palace workshops. In Moss, Graham, Tsang, A Treasury of Chinese
Snuff Bottles, Vol. 5, Glass, p. 18, it is suggested that during the early years of the Imperial
glassworks, from 1696 into the early decades of the eighteenth century, it might have been a
closely guarded secret, slowly leaking out to other workshops over time. With its ruby-red color and
chi dragon design, so popular at the Court (see under lot 601) this handsome bottle is likely to be a
product of the Palace workshops. We can be reasonably certain that ruby-red glass was produced
during the Kangxi and Yongzheng periods, but the absence of reign marks on so many glass snuff
bottles does not allow us to differentiate between Qianlong and pre-Qianlong examples.

This design was undoubtedly popular during the Qianlong period, however, suggesting the most
likely date of production. Similar designs were also produced in other colors. For an example in
green glass, see M. Hughes, The Blair Bequest. Chinese Snuff Bottles from the Princeton University
Art Museum, p. 110, no. 119.
1730–1780

The Meriem Collection. Lot 656

Hugh Moss |