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An ovoid-shaped Chinese Ming period porcelain jar painted in rich blue around the sides with two five-clawed dragons among clouds and with rocks and waves below.  Round the shoulder a stylised shou (long life character) seems to grow out of the lotus

Extraordinary Chinese and Japanese Works of Art in the Royal Collection

Longquan, Zhejiang province [China]

Dish dish 15th century, mounts 1725-50

RCIN 35288

King's Drawing Room, Windsor Castle

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Green celadon glazes, like the glaze on this dish, were a uniquely Chinese advance in the art of ceramics. They emerged following the Han period (206 BC–AD 220) and were soon in demand throughout Asia and the Middle East. This fifteenth-century dish is the earliest recorded celadon ware in the Royal Collection. It was probably bought for George IV (1762–1830) in France, where it had been luxuriously mounted in gilt bronze. The mounts are exceptionally high quality and would have enhanced the value of the precious porcelain, in keeping with contemporary taste. However, closer examination also reveals that they have been deliberately positioned to hide cracks in the porcelain on each side of the dish.