In the centre of the interior are two five-clawed dragons, one ascending and the other descending, pursuing a flaming pearl among scrolling clouds. On the exterior, two dragons chase flaming pearls. The Dragon King in Buddhism is believed to possess a precious pearl that lies in the ocean. The decorative theme of dragons playing with pearls started to appear after the Tang and Song dynasties (7th – 12th centuries) is one sign of the spread of Buddhism in China.
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, January 2012
Dish (two dragon design)
Jingdezhen ware plate with dragon playing with a flaming pearl
porcelain with underglaze blue decoration
6.4 x 44.5 cm
Not on display
Where the work was made
Shown in 3 exhibitions
Referenced in 2 publications
Mr V V W Fretwell, Mr L G Harrison, Ivan McMeekin and J. Hepburn Myrtle (Compilators), Chinese ceramics, Sydney, 1965, 31. cat.no.145
J. Hepburn Myrtle, Late Chinese Imperial Porcelain, Sydney, 1980, front and back cover (colour illus.), 7, 31 (illus.). cat.no. 44. See 'Further Information' for text.