Dish with yellow engraved dragon and clouds motif

Ming dynasty, Wan-li period (A.D. 1573--1620)
Diameter: 21 cm

The main motif of this dish is carved out of a thick layer of yellow lacquer on top of a finely engraved diaper pattern of red lacquer, In the Record of Decorative Lacquer, there is the line: "Carved yellow lacquer with a red diaper pattern is beautiful, indeed." A decor of clouds and a dragon playing with a pearl is carved in the center of this plate, with the rim divided into four panels depicting floral pattern. The underside of the plate depicts carved flower scrolls with leaves and branches. The base of the dish is finished with red lacquer, and the following phrase is carved near its edge in standard script characters filled in with gold: "Manufactured in the yi-wei year of the Wan-li reign, Ming dynasty," indicating that this dish was made in the year 1595.

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