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  • Place of origin:

    Jingdezhen (made)

  • Date:

    mid 14th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Porcelain painted in underglaze blue

  • Credit Line:

    Purchased with Art Fund support

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 145, case 29, shelf 1

After 1300, Chinese potters at Jingdezhen began to decorate the local white porcelain in cobalt blue. They perfected the painting technique, so that the blue did not run during firing. Smaller items have Chinese shapes and may have been made for the home market. But large dishes such as this one were made for export back to the Middle East, where the cobalt for the blue had come from.

Physical description

Porcelain dish, with shallow, rounded cavetto and flat, canted rim; v-shaped footring and flat base. Painted in underglaze blue on the inside with two peafowls among rocks, with growing bamboo, lingzhi fungus, floral sprays, grapevines and two insects; round the cavetto is a band of scrolling lotus and on the rim a border of lozenge diaper-work. A similar lotus scroll band encircles the outside. Rich violet-toned cobalt turning to black where thickly applied, lustrous glaze of a bluish-green tinge where thick. The exposed body on foot and base turning to orange-buff with brown speckling.

Place of Origin

Jingdezhen (made)


mid 14th century (made)



Materials and Techniques

Porcelain painted in underglaze blue


Height: 7.6 cm, Diameter: 45.8 cm mouthrim, Diameter: 27 cm footrim

Descriptive line

Dish, porcelain painted in underglaze blue with peafowls and plants, China, Yuan dynasty, mid 14th century

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Pope, John Fourteenth-century blue-and-white; a group of Chinese porcelains in the Topkapu Sarayi Müzesi, Istanbul. Washington, DC: Freer Gallery of Art, 1970, Plate 14a.
Watson, William L'art de l'ancienne Chine / William Watson Paris: Mazenod, ca. 1979, Fig. 664
Ayers, John. Far Eastern Ceramics in the Victoria and Albert Museum. London: Sotheby Parke Bernet, in association with the Victoria and Albert Museum, 1980, Monochrome Plate No. 39

Labels and date

Dish with peacock and grape vines
China, Jingdezhen, Yuan dynasty, about 1350
Museum no. C.24-1968 [2009]

Production Note



Porcelain; Cobalt blue


Glazed; Painted; Blue and white

Subjects depicted

Insect; Pheasants; Vine scrolls; Diaper-work; Floral sprays; Bamboo


Ceramics; Porcelain


East Asia Collection

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