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Chinese jade vessel with a silver-gilt foot
Taller de la Dinastía Ch´ing; Debourg, Michel
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Taller de la Dinastía Ch´ing
Debourg, Michel

Chinese jade vessel with a silver-gilt foot

XVII century. Silver gilt, Nephrite Room 079B

A vessel composed of a raised bowl made from a piece of greyish jade in the form of a lotus leaf, with long-stalked leaves cut and tied in a bundle to form a handle. At the top, an animal, perhaps a dragon, is inclined over the mouth. The stone piece is supported by a silver gilt foot with a triangular base decorated with ribbon patterns and foliage, and with three scallop shells on the corners. Over this base are a gadrooned circle and three masks of satyrs. Rising in the middle is a tripod of scrolls ending in dogs’ or lions’ paws, with scallop shells beneath festoons in the gaps. Another gadrooned ring and some C-shaped supports hold up the base of the vessel, designed in an oriental style. The vessel is Chinese, and its motif very frequent, while the mount is the work of the silversmith Michel Debourg. The piece was a gift from the King of Siam.

Inside the mount is a set of marks which coincide with those of vessel O-66 of the Dauphin’s Treasure and also with another in the Louvre, OA 6618. The maker’s mark consists of a crown, a fleur-de-lys framing a D, and below the initials MB, corresponding to the silversmith Michel Debourg. This is accompanied on the interior and the exterior by the charge and discharge marks for small pieces and mounted plate of Antoine Etienne Ridereau, an assay master or fermier who was active from November 1684 to October 1687. The mounts on the two vessels in the Prado and the one in Paris are made by the same person, with designs typical of the classicist Baroque of the reign of Louis XIV. This was virtually an official style, enjoying the favour of the Court and the monarch, and there are similar drawings whose inspiration comes from motifs created by Le Brun (whom Arbeteta considered the possible author of this design), Bérain, Masson and other decorators. A baptismal font owned by the King of Sweden, made in silver by Jean-François Cousinet between 1696 and 1707, has a foot with a similar design of paws and leaves, but there is less resemblance in the stem, which has figures of angels, palms, and cartouches with the royal arms of Sweden.

The Museo del Prado has the photograph by Juan Laurent y Minier, Untitled, c. 1879. Museo del Prado, HF0835/55 (L. Arbeteta, in press).

Technical data

Related artworks

Chinese jade vessel with a silver-gilt foot
Albumen on photographic paper, Ca. 1863
Inventory number
Taller de la Dinastía Ch´ing; Debourg, Michel
Chinese jade vessel with a silver-gilt foot
XVII century (Vessel); 1684 - 1687 (Adornment)
Chased; Cast; Carved
Silver gilt; Nephrite
Height: 19.8 cm.; Width: 21.5 cm.; Base/bottom: 14.7 cm.; Weight: 2346 g.; Ancho base: 15 cm.; Bottom of the base: 12.6 cm.
Tesoro del Delfín
Royal Collection

Bibliography +

Angulo Íñiguez, Diego, Catálogo de las Alhajas del Delfín, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1989 (ed.rev), pp. 111.

Arbeteta Mira, Letizia, El tesoro del Delfín: alhajas de Felipe V recibidas por herencia de su padre Luis, Gran Delfín de Francia, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, 2001, pp. 349-350.

Fascinados por Oriente, Ministerio de Cultura, Subdirecci, 2009, pp. 51.

Arbeteta, L. Azcue, L., El Tesoro del Delfín, Museo Nacional del Prado, 2018, 2018.

Other inventories +

Inv. Felipe V, La Granja, Tesoro del Delfín, 1746. Núm. 131.

Inv. Gabinete Historia Natural, 1776. Núm. 11.
Otro vazo, hechura irregular calado á donde haze la forma del asa labrado de reliebe, un ramo con sus hojas, yuna figura de rana de piedra Diaspro oriental blanquiço; tiene el pie de plata dorada, y forma triangular, compuesto de un adorno de hojas y cogollos, cintas, y tres mascarones: otra pieza agallonada y lisa, en lo que haze la vasa tres cartelas con sus Jarras, tres conchas, y tres festones: mas arriba agallonado, todo cincelado...regulado dha plata en treinta y tres onzas y cinco ochabas...vale (las tres piezas) 12.774.

Exhibitions +

Fascinados por Oriente
16.12.2009 - 03.10.2010

Oriente en Palacio. Tesoros asiáticos en las colecciones reales
01.03.2003 - 30.06.2003

El Real Sitio de La Granja de San Ildefonso. retrato y escena del rey
La Granja
15.06.2000 - 15.10.2000

Location +

Room 079B (On Display)

Update date: 07-03-2020 | Registry created on 02-12-2015

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