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Cricket cage

Cricket cage

  • Place of origin:

    China (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1800-1850 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gourd, moulded

  • Credit Line:

    Sir John Addis Gift

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Moulded gourd pot, hexagonal, with poetic phrase round the six sides 'qiu yue shui hu jiao ying' (autumn moon and vessel of ice reflect each other), mouth fitted with a fine ivory ring set in gilt foil

Place of Origin

China (made)


ca. 1800-1850 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Gourd, moulded


Height: 5 cm, Diameter: 5.9 cm at base

Object history note

From Register:
Similar washers in the Palace Museum, Beijing (Gugong Bowuyuan Yuankan no. 1, 1979, p. 49)

The brush-washer is made from an almost entire gourd completely encased in a sectional mould, with only the junction of the stem cut off to make the mouth. The poem is probably an allusion to a quatrain by the Tang poet Wang Wei. The poet sends news to himself to Loyang by a returning traveller "There is a heart of ice in the vessel of jade". Ice denotes purity and jade other noble qualities. The phrase on the brush-washer thus evokes the correspondence between the austere purity of the scholar's heart (vessel of ice) and the most perfect of all natural phenomena (autumn moon).

Descriptive line

Pot, moulded gourd, China, Qing dynasty, ca. 1800-1850

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

Clunas, Craig. Chinese Carving. London: Sun Tree Publishing Ltd in association with the Victoria & Albert Museum, 1996. p. 68, fig. 83.
Addis, J.M. 'Impressed Gourds'. Oriental Art, 1964. N.S. vol. X, no. 1.






East Asia Collection

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