Pair of large Chinese Canton famille verte gilt porcelain vases


This beautiful pair of Canton famille verte porcelain vases features profusely painted decoration, with scenes of Chinese courtly life interspersed amongst colourful foliage.


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This pair of large Canton style vases, in the famille verte technique, are exemplary of some of the finest craftsmanship from late Qing Dynasty China. Each piece is so-called ‘mallet shaped’, consisting of a long, ovoid shaped body which has a waisted neck and a flared, or lobed, rim.

Both of the vases feature a pair of twin, double foo-dog handles mounted to the neck which are adorned with gilding, that pleasingly accentuating the white-ground porcelain, and gives the wares an extra warmth.

The body of each vase features profuse and elaborate decoration, including a lavish and abundant array of flowers and foliage. The naturalistic elements serve as a kind of frame, containing within each further painted panels, that depict figural court scenes of a variety of kinds, appealing to a European curiosity for depictions of Chinese aristocratic settings and figures. The colour palette throughout is rich and busy: while greens do predominated, hence the term famille verte porcelain, there are nonetheless pleasing touches and areas of reds and pinks throughout, that contrast beautifully.

The vases are mounted on exquisite and highly elaborate gilt-bronze feet, cast in the shape of dolphins, in the manner of decadent European baroque. These scrolling, intricate and grand furnishing hold the vases aloft and cast them in a regal shroud of grandeur, combining the best of European Chinoiserie with stunning Chinese export porcelain, making them outstanding pieces of antique interior design.


Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
19th Century
19th Century
Chinese Interest, Figurative Art, Floral
Gilt, Ormolu (Gilt Bronze), Porcelain
Gold, Green, Multi-coloured, Red, White


107 cm / 42.1 inches
37 cm / 14.6 inches


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