A collection of Canton porcelain made for Zill al-Sultan, son of Nadir al-Din Shah China, dated AH 1
Lot 157
A collection of Canton porcelain made for Zill al-Sultan, son of Nadir al-Din Shah China, dated AH 1297/ AD 1879-80(5)
Sold for £13,200 (US$ 20,700) inc. premium

Lot Details
A collection of Canton porcelain made for Zill al-Sultan, son of Nadir al-Din Shah
China, dated AH 1297/ AD 1879-80
comprising a large bowl, a pair of large dishes, and a pair of side dishes, each piece extensively enamelled in polychrome with lotus sprays, cartouches depicting court scenes alternating with floral and bird depictions, divided by bands of trellis, all on a lavender blue ground
the large bowl 40 cm. diam; the large dishes 38.3 cm. diam.;the side dishes 19.5 cm. diam.(5)

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Acquired by Lt. Col. Sir Thomas Wolseley Haig (1865-1938), who served as His Majesty's Consul-General at Kirman, Mashhad, Isfahan and Tehran from 1910-20; and by descent to Robert Wolseley Haig (1902-82), who had been on the staff of the Imperial Bank of Persia; then to his nephew Major James Haig (1922-87); and thence by descent to the current owner.

    The inscription reads: farmayesh-e hazrat-e as'ad-e amjad-e arafa'-e ashraf-e vala sultan mas'ud mirza yamin al-dawla zill al-sultan 1297 or 'Commissioned by His Excellency, the Auspicious, the most Glorious, the Most high, the Most noble, the Eminent Sultan Mas'ud Mirza Yamin al-Dawla Zill al-Sultan 1297 (AD1879-80)'.

    Zill al-Sultan (1266-1336/1849-1917) was a son of Nasir al-Din Shah and a powerful Prince who held the Governorship of most of the southern provinces with his own army and British support, attempting to replace Nasir al-Din Shah. His territory was finally reduced to Isfahan in AH 1305/ AD 1887-8). Following a strike by the people of Isfahan, he was removed from his post and he went to Europe. His numerous attempts to return and acquire power failed. He returned to Isfahan towards the end of the First World War and died in AH 1336/ AD 1917.

    This set belongs to a large service commissoned by Zill al-Sultan. Cantonese export porcelain wares in the "Rose Medallion" style usually have pink, green or yellow background colours so this set is somewhat unusual for the type. For a discussion of the group, see Daniel Nadler, "Chinese Export Porcelain with Arabic Inscriptions" in Antiques, March 2000.
Auction information

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