Description & Technical information

Qianlong period
European Market 
A very rare Chinese export porcelain famille rose holy water stoupe or font and cover, the back plate decorated with peony and the basin and cover of ribbed form. Such fonts or stoupes are intended to hold small quantities of holy water, usually with a sponge, for people to dip their fingers in before making the sign of the cross. They were often placed at the entrances to churches or holy sites. The form is known in defltware, faïence and metalwork but is rare in Chinese export porcelain. Dias 1996, suggests that the presence of a lid means it was probably for private use rather than in a church. ?A pair of the same type and decoration as this is in the Museu da Fundação Ricardo do Espírito Santo Silva, Lisbon. A few examples are known in blue and white of similar shape, marked IHS to the back plate, for the Jesuits.

Date:  1760
Period:  1750-1850, 18th century
Origin:  China
Medium: porcelain
Dimensions: 21 cm (8¹/₄ inches)
Categories: Oriental and Asian Art