Description Moon flask, "Baoyueping" in Chinese, is a type of vase with a flat side and a round shape like a full moon. Various motifs of longevity on the flask suggest that the flask is designed for an important elder's birthday. The medallion in the center of the front and back is the stylized character for longevity "Shou". Eight motifs surrounding the "Shou" are attributes of the Eight Immortals, a group of immortal figures widely loved and usually associated with longevity. Another group of eight motifs appear on the sides of the flask, including a conch, a double-fish etc. They are the eight treasures of Buddhism, believed to bring fortune. Auspicious clouds, flowers and bats fill in the gap between the major motifs, which render a compact composition and a robust atmosphere. Bats symbolize happiness because the character for "bat" sounds the same as that for "happiness", "Fu".
- Imperial Chinese Treasures from the Walters Collection. 1991-0.
Provenance William T. or Henry Walters Collection, Baltimore, prior to 1896; bequest to Walters Art Museum, 1931.
Inscriptions Reign mark of the Qianlong emperor
Credit Bequest of Henry Walters, 1931
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