(China – )
8.9 x 33.0 cm
This dish is a typical 14th century celadon in size, style and colour. The moulded decoration in the centre is not especially common. While the peony design is among the most frequent patterns found on 14th century Longquan celadons it is less common to find a deer discreetly included in the design. The peony is a symbol of wealth and happiness; the deer is the symbol of longevity. The spotted deer in the design is of the 'sika' species, the favourite type of deer with ceramic, metalwork and lacquer artists since the Tang dynasty (618-907). A picture of a deer often represents official emolument because of the similar pronunciation - 'lu' - of the two words.
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, 1981.