A beautiful, unusual porcelain cup from the famous Hoi An cargo.
The Ming Dynasty cup is of Vietnamese origin, dating to approximately 1400 A.D.; a sea salvaged and officially recorded piece from the 'Hoi-An' Shipwreck.
The cavetto (walls of the cup) are bell shaped and painted with thick cobalt blue line exteriorly, depicting diamond registers alternating with leaf scrolls in curved reserve. Below, peony petals lie, above the foot rim. The tondo (central reserved area) depicts a thickly painted Chinese phuc character, symbol for "wealth".
This rare piece has a wonderful, romantic provenance. It was excavated from the important Hoi-An shipwreck. The Hoi-An was a huge, overloaded trading ship that sank in the mid 15th Century, probably due to a catastrophic typhoon. The ship was carrying a substantial cargo of High Quality Vietnamese Ming export porcelain. We know that the Hoi An wares were produced in Kilns near modern-day Hanoi and were probably bound for the European Market before the ship was cruelly destroyed and sunk 250 feet into the cold waters of the South China Sea. The fascinating story of the Hoi-An and its recovery has been made into a best-selling novel by Frank Pope, entitled Dragon Sea: A True Tale of Treasure, Archeology, and Greed Off the Coast of Vietnam.
In contrast to many unprovenanced Hoi An pieces on the market, this ceramic has been officially recorded by the Vietnamese authorities (VISAL), whose sticker is affixed to the artifact. The recent ratification of the UNESCO convention by South East Asian countries will effectively put a halt to all future shipwreck salvage operations. Consequently, legitimately recorded pieces such as the present example are finite in supply and currently represent a fantastic investment opportunity.
Diameter: approx 3 1/2 inches.
Condition: Very well preserved, small area of damage to glaze as is consistent with long term ocean burial. Please see pictures.
Ceramics from the Hoi An wreck can now be found in the worlds top museums, for a description of a similar piece in the British museum, please see the following link.
Display stand shown is property of the photography studio. An identical stand may be found in our store, under accessories.
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