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Pair of Greenish White Jade Lidded Bowls with Gold-Filled Longevity Characters and Qianlong Reign Mark

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Period: Qianlong reign (1736-1795), Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Medium: greenish white jade; gold

The upper face of the lid and the exterior of each bowl are decorated with two hundred longevity characters (shou) engraved in different seal script renditions and filled with gold. A band of lotus scrolls encircles the edge of the lid and below the exterior rim of the bowl. The centre base is engraved with a four-character reign mark in clerical script that may be translated to read, "Made in the Qianlong period" (Qianlong nian zhi). These bowls are noted for their exquisite carving and rather thin walls. The sophisticated sleekness of the jade material complements the resplendence of the gold-filled characters. The bowls were among the food utensils made for imperial birthday celebration.

 

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