Skip Navigation


Asian Art

On View: Asian Galleries, West, 2nd floor (China)
This vase is a very early example of famille rose enamel on porcelain. It represents the transition between the Kangxi (1662–1722) and Yongzheng (1723–35) reigns, with the shape, shoulder, and narrative scenes on the neck being typical of Kangxi-period forms while the large peonies are more characteristic of Yongzheng-period ceramics. The decoration highlights two mythical birds, either a pair of phoenixes (feng) or a phoenix and her mate (huan) in a rocky landscape strewn with peonies and peach blossoms. This dramatic scene is a rebus expressing a wish for a rich and honorable household. The juxtaposition of the phoenix and peony symbolize a happy life, and the phoenix and mate connote a blissful marriage.
MEDIUM Porcelain, overglaze enamel
  • Place Made: Jiangxi, China
  • DATES 1662–1772
    DYNASTY Qing Dynasty
    PERIOD Kangxi Period
    DIMENSIONS 18 1/4 x 7 5/8 in. (46.4 x 19.4 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Gift of the executors of the Estate of Colonel Michael Friedsam
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Shallow plate-like mouth; slightly long neck; cut (or bent) shoulders; tubular and long belly; circular foot. Form is like a wooden cudgel. Also known as "wooden cudgel vase" (baluster or Rouleau). Wucai and famille rose decorations of phoenix, peony, magnolia, peach flower, etc... Homophone of phoenix and peony is "yu tang fu gui" (fine house of wealth). Homophones for paintings on neck are "zhi ri gao sheng" (official promotion is nearby) and "jie jie ping an" (peace season after season). Besides lower section of circular foot is unglazed, clear glaze covers the interior, exterior, and interior of foot's base. Display porcelain. Condition: Intact. 2 raised lines on belly which were later painted over.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Asian Galleries, West, 2nd floor (China)
    CAPTION Vase, 1662–1772. Porcelain, overglaze enamel, 18 1/4 x 7 5/8 in. (46.4 x 19.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the executors of the Estate of Colonel Michael Friedsam, 32.1126. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 32.1126_SL1.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 32.1126_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
    You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
    Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.