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A rare famille verte 'qilin' wine ewer. Kangxi

Modelled as a qilin standing four-square with his head raised high and a short curved spout issuing from its ferocious open jaws, the head framed by moulded circles, the body also moulded with bifurcated scrolls painted with sinewy dragons, against a red spiral ground, the tail hollowed and open at the tip. 21.8cm (8½in) high. Estimate: £10,000 - 12,000

Footnote: Compare a similar pair of qilin ewers, illustrated in Ausstellung Chinesischer Kunst, Berlin, 1929, pl.906. A ewer of the same form was sold at Christie's New York, 19 March 2008, lot 617.

Bonhams. Fine Chinese Art, 14 May 2009. New Bond Street www.bonhams.com (Copyright © 2002-2009 Bonhams 1793 Ltd., Images and Text All Rights Reserved)