Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Snuff Bottle with Flowers and Rocks

Republic of China (1912–1949)
Painted enamel on glass with nephrite stopper
H. 2 3/8 in. (6 cm); W. 2 1/4 in. (5.7 cm)
Snuff Bottles
Credit Line:
Bequest of Mary Stillman Harkness, 1950
Accession Number:
50.145.204a, b
Not on view
Snuff, or powdered tobacco, was brought to China by Jesuit missionaries in the late seventeenth or early eighteenth century. Its use spread quickly, as did demand for small containers to hold it. Snuff bottles were produced in large number and an astonishing variety of media, including metal, jade, ivory, bamboo, lacquer, and glass. Not all bottles were functional: many were collected as exoticisms or treasured for their precious materials and exquisite craftsmanship.
Inscription: Enameled on side in black: red seal

Poem: "Drifting across the sun, Turquoise mists grow redder and brighter"

Marking: Four characters enameled in blue: Qianlong
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