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A rare and brilliantly enamelled ruby-ground 'yangcai' 'floral' bowl. Yongzheng yuzhi four-character mark and of the period. Photo Bonhams

Extremely finely potted, with shallow rounded sides rising from a short straight foot, delicately painted in brilliant 'yangcai' enamels, the details picked out in black, with chrysanthemum, mallow, various peonies, yellow day lily and various other flowers, all reserved on a rich ruby-red ground, the interior and base glazed white, the base inscribed with the four-character mark in underglaze-blue within a double square. 9.1cm diam. Sold for HK$2,400,000

清雍正 胭脂紅地洋彩花卉紋小碗 方框青花「雍正御製」楷書款

Provenance來源: Sotheby's New York, 17 October 2001, lot 169

A bowl of almost identical size and design from the Qing Court collection, preserved in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, is illustrated in Harmony and Integrity: The Yongzheng Emperor and His Times, Taipei, 2009, pg. 215, pl. II-41 (fig.1), and discussed by Yu Peijin, who expounds that the ruby-ground enamel on the bowl is exactly that recorded as 'xiyang hongse' (literally 'Western red') on the Taocheng jishi pei, the calligraphy written on the death of Tang Yin, the Imperial supervisor of porcelain at Jingdezhen from 1728-1756.

See also a bowl in the British Museum, London, illustrated in Hugh Moss, By Imperial Command, Hong Kong, 1976, pl.5; and a bowl in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, illustrated by Rose Kerr Chinese Ceramics: Porcelain of the Qing Dynasty, London, 1986, pl.93. For a similar bowl bearing a Yongzheng yuzhi bowl sold at auction, see a slightly smaller example from the T.Y. Chao collection, sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 18 November 1986, lot 130.

Bonhams. FINE CHINESE ART, 25 May 2011 to 26 May 2011, Hong Kong, Island Shangri-La Hotel www.bonhams.com