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The Hongs Bowl

Chinese School

Category

Ceramics

Date

1786 - 1788

Materials

Hard-paste porcelain with enamel

Measurements

150 mm (Height); 370 mm (Diameter)

Place of origin

Guangzhou

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Collection

Nostell Priory, West Yorkshire (Accredited Museum)

On show at

State Dining Room, Nostell Priory, West Yorkshire, North, National Trust

NT 959642

Caption

This porcelain bowl depicts the trading offices, or hongs, of western merchants along the waterfront in Guangzhou, China. Panoramic scenes cover the entire outer surface of the bowl, including views of the bustling dockside and the balustraded verandahs of the warehouses. Seven flags are shown flying along the edge of the river, including that of the newly independent America, with only 13 stars. Bowls of this type were produced in China as luxury items and exported to the west where they would have been used to hold punch at festive gatherings.

Summary

Punchbowl of hard-paste porcelain with enamel decoration depicting the hongs or trading offices of western merchants along the waterfront at Guangzhou (Canton), Jingdezhen, China, 1786 or 1788.

Provenance

Recorded as being at Nostell Priory in the 1806 probate inventory of Sir Rowland Winn, 6th Baronet (1775-1805) and thence by descent; acquired by the National Trust by private treaty in 2008 with grants from the Royal Oak Foundation (£49,200), the Art Fund (£30,000) and the V&A Purchase Grant Fund (£10,000).

Makers and roles

Chinese School, maker

References

Ferguson, 2009: Patricia F. Ferguson. “Canton revisited - a ‘Hong’ bowl at Nostell Priory.” Apollo, suppl. Historic Houses and Collections Annual April (2009): pp.18-23.

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