Teabowl and saucer with quail and peonies

ca. 1710–30
Chinese, for European market
Hard-paste porcelain painted with colored enamels over transparent glaze (Jingdezhen ware)
Height (teabowl .117): 1 3/8 in. (3.5 cm);
Diameter (saucer .118): 4 1/4 in. (10.8 cm)
Credit Line:
The Hans Syz Collection, Gift of Stephan B. Syz and John D. Syz, 1995
Accession Number:
1995.268.117, .118
Not on view
The age-old Chinese pictorial subject of paired quails and rice stalks (substituted here by peonies) first appears on paintings dating back to the twelfth century, and perhaps earlier. The images functioned symbolically to form a rebus that suggested peace and harmony.
Hans Syz (until d. 1991; to his sons, John and Stephan) ; by descent, John D. Syz ; and Stephan B. Syz (1991–95; to MMA)