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Subject:Famille Rose/Blue & White Charger with 'hallmark'
Posted By: James Mon, Jul 01, 2019 IP:,82.13

I have this beautiful charger featuring a blue and white rim and a centrally painted plum blossom tree(I think). It has a four character underglaze blue mark to base which I have not seen before. Any help with age/period would be gratefully received.

Subject:Re: Famille Rose/Blue & White Charger with 'hallmark'
Posted By: Bill H Tue, Jul 02, 2019

It took me a while to identify the second character of the base-mark on your dish, which is obscured by the flash. The mark turns out to read "Yi shan tang zhi" (一善堂製), "The Hall of Complete Benevolence", which is in Gerald Davison's latest issue of "The New & Revised Handbook of Marks on Chinese Ceramics as associated with the Jiaqing to Guangxu reigns.

Unfortunately, it appears that your dish probably isn't associated with any reign of the Qing dynasty, but likely is one of a recent wave of fakes out of Mainland China. I located one 2016 auction record (first link below) where a dish having this same mark was being offered for 10,000 Yuan/RMB (US$1,455.24). It was decorated almost exactly like yours, with everything blue & white, including a different scene in the center of a child riding a Qilin amidst cranes and lingzhi fungi. This suggests the Chinese maker probably used printed transfers for the bordering decorations, while switching out the center motifs to try to avoid detection of the duplications. Actually, combining famille rose with this blue & white border design is sort of like mixing water and oil; it doesn't really reflect the traditional Chinese artistic scheme of things as far as I know.

The remaining links below show mixed results, with some things selling and others not. This may reflect bidder perceptions that some of the items were authentic or owners of lots bidding to protect their reserves. However, I'm rather certain that my findings vis-à-vis your dish leave no plausible conclusions besides what I've stated.

Best regards,

Bill H. | Associations | Articles | Exhibitions | Galleries |