Archive item - not for sale
Chinese blue and white Swatow dish, 17th century, decorated to the central roundel with a lake scene of two ducks, perching and in flight, along with other birds among lotus and pine, the wide rim with ten panels containing fruits, flowers, pine and bamboo, the reverse with three beribboned pearls and floral sprays
Diameter 41.5cm. (16 ¼ in.)
Hairline to rim with old restoration on the reverse.
Native to East Asia, mandarin ducks mate for life and consequently represent marital bliss and fidelity. They are frequently depicted swimming amongst lotus, a motif which originated in the Tang dynasty and which represents a desire for sons (see Pierson, Stacey, Designs as Signs: Decoration and Chinese Ceramics, Percival David Foundation, London 2001)