Season Year

Fig. 10. A white jade basket-weave snuff bottle. Qing Dynasty, 18th/19th century. Fig. 11. A sapphire blue overlay white glass snuff bottle. Qianlong mark and of the period, 1735–1796. Fig. 13. A famille rose snuff bottle. Qianlong mark and of the period, 1735–1796. Fig. 12. A carved amethyst cicada snuff bottle. Qing Dynasty, 18th/19th century. Fig. 8. An embellished white and russet jade snuff bottle. Bottle, 1820–1920; embellishment, 20th century, by the Tsuda family, Kyoto. Fig. 9. An iron red painted porcelain snuff bottle. Qianlong mark and of the period, 1735–1796. 28 in a neat delicate hand with a poem authored by the Qianlong Emperor and a blossoming plum branch on the other, cleverly utilizing a flaw line in the stone to powerful effect. It sold for $7,500, more than double the estimate, in enthusiastic bidding. The other jade pebble bottle is a Japanese-embellished example (lot 9129, fig. 8 ). Made in China, probably in the early nineteenth century, the bottle was enhanced with the addition of applied hard stone fragments, lacquer, and gilt early in the twentieth century, most likely by the Tsuda family of Kyoto. The scene of a female qin player and her assistants in a garden setting is nicely juxtaposed on a backdrop formed by the original russet skin of the pebble. The other side depicts a pensive figure set against the white negative space of the nephrite. It sold at $13,750 to a Chinese bidder in the room against spirited bidding. The last porcelain bottle of merit at the sale was a compressed gourd- shaped example well painted in shades of iron red and gilt with scrolling foliage and flower-heads centered by a shou character on the larger lower gourd and with a neatly written four-character Qianlong mark to the base (lot 9115, fig. 9 ). Oddly, having sold at $8,000 at a provincial U.S. auction in 2013, its estimate of $3,000 to $5,000 seemed conservative. This time around, it sold at $8,750. The next day, September 13, Sotheby ’ s auctioned a lovely group of bottles from the collection of Robert and Maurine Muntz. According to the catalogue introduction, the collection had been formed in the relatively short space of eight years. It consists mostly of glass, porcelain, and jade examples. A choice selection of just 26 bottles from the collection graced the first part of the sale, while another 29 lots (some grouped) were offered later in the week. A superb jade, basket-weave bottle opened the proceedings (lot 216, fig. 10 ). Being of an unusual ovoid shape, rather than classically rounded, this bottle aroused much interest. The decoration is a trompe