Incense burner with cover


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 222

This incense set, consisting of an incense burner, a covered box, and a slender vase, is made from flawless white nephrite, the most desirable kind of jade. The relatively small scale of the vessels suggests that they are meant to be desktop ornaments rather than to serve a practical function. They are typical of an innovative style of the eighteenth century, when Chinese craftsmen created novel designs by combining traditional forms with decorative elements from foreign cultures. While the shapes of the vessels are derived from local ritual receptacles, their thin walls and delicately fluted sides are unmistakably inspired by the jades of Mughal India. (Set contains: 02.18.537a, b; .538a, b; .539)

Incense burner with cover, Jade (nephrite), China

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