An archaic bronze ritual wine vessel (Zun). Late Shang Dynasty-Early Western Zhou Dynasty, 11th century BC. photo courtesy Sotheby"s

of tall circular form with a wide trumpet mouth and raised splayed foot, the long flared neck plain, the central bulb cast in low relief with a frieze of confronting dragons, divided and interspersed with notched vertical flanges, between narrow bands of circles, the lower bulb cast with a similar design frieze, the bronze a warm golden-brown patina with patches of green malachite and red cuprite encrustation, the inside of the foot cast with a long inscription; height 11 7/8 in., 30.1 cmheight 11 7/8 in., 30.1 cm. Estimate 80,000—100,000 USD. Lot Sold 146,500 USD

PROVENANCE: Collection of C. L. Rothenstein, Bradford (according to label) who in 1914 changed his name to Charles L. Rutherston.
Bluett & Sons, London (according to label).

EXHIBITED: International Exhibition of Chinese Art, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1935-6, cat. no. 182.

LITERATURE AND REFERENCES: Catalogue of the International Exhibition of Chinese Art 1935-6, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1935, p. 14, no. 182 and International Exhibition of Chinese Art 1935-6: Illustrated Supplement to the Catalogue, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1935, p. 16, fig. 182.

NOTE: Charles Lambert Rutherston (1866-1927) was the brother of Sir William Rothenstein, Principal of the Royal College of Art, connoisseur, collector and one of the first patrons of Henry Moore, who upon visiting Rutherston in 1923 noted that he had one of the most important collections of Chinese art in Britain.

Sotheby's. Fine Ceramics and works of Art. 15 Sept 2010. New York www.sothebys.com