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Copper Snuff Bottle with Plum Blossoms in Painted Enamelware
K'ang-hsi Reign (1662-1722), Ch'ing dynasty (1644-1911)
Body height: 7.6 cm

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Even in something as small as a snuff bottle can be seen a decorative style combining East and West. For example, the panel in the center of this object represents plum blossoms painted in gold lacquer, representing the Japanese style of maki-e that was popular in European markets. The plum blossoms and butterflies on the ground outside of the panel, however, are done in traditional Chinese decorative manners, symbolizing the integrity and longevity of the literatus.

Text: Yu P'ei-chin
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