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Chinese Export Silver

Unlike Western silver products which were often decorated with motifs of grapes, goats, or other agricultural images, Chinese silver products were created in order to export to Western civilizations and were decorated with traditional Chinese motifs like dragons, landscapes, birds, plants, etc.

Early on, each of these silver objects were masterfully crafted by hand and formed with unique imagery. However, as Chinese export silver became more popular over time, craftsmen responded by mass-producing and replicating items.

Chinese export silver can be traced back to the 17th century, originating in Canton, Jiujang, Beijing, and several other regions. During this time, China was exporting replicas of European silver. It wasn’t until 1850 that Chinese export silver really took on its own imagery and identity in the marketplace.


Quick Facts

  • Because China did not have the same standards of silver production as the British, the purity of Chinese export silver works are inconsistent. However, this inconsistency does not affect the value of such works
  • Catherine the Great, as well as many other European royals, often collected Chinese export silvers for the lower price and the exoticism
  • Many early 18th century Chinese export silvers were destroyed as fakes in the United Kingdom as they were copies of hallmark U.K. silver works

Recommended Items at Auction

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Handmade Chinese Filigree Silver Sailboat In Display Case
Apr 27, 12:00 PM EDT
Handmade Chinese Filigree Silver Sailboat In Display Case
by RB Fine Arts
Est: $200- $400
$1006 Bids
Chinese Silver Repousse Creamer
Apr 26, 10:00 AM EDT
Chinese Silver Repousse Creamer
by Nye & Company
Est: $50- $25,000
$403 Bids
CHINESE EXPORT SILVER MUG, 19TH CENTURY Height: 4 1/2 in. (11.4 cm.)
Apr 24, 10:00 AM EDT
CHINESE EXPORT SILVER MUG, 19TH CENTURY Height: 4 1/2 in. (11.4 cm.)
by Potomack Company
Est: $600- $800
$3252 Bids
ASIAN TIBETAN SILVER PERSON, FOO DOG AMULET BAR
Apr 23, 9:00 PM EDT
ASIAN TIBETAN SILVER PERSON, FOO DOG AMULET BAR
by Weatherham Estate Treasures
Est: $100- $150
$700 Bids
Asian Tibetan Silver Leg Lifted Foo Dog Amulet Bar
Apr 24, 9:00 PM EDT
Asian Tibetan Silver Leg Lifted Foo Dog Amulet Bar
by Weatherham Estate Treasures
Est: $100- $150
$750 Bids
A GROUP OF TEN VARIED CHINESE SMALL SILVER WARES, BAO SHENG 寶升 MARK, 19/20TH C.
Apr 19, 9:30 AM CEST
A GROUP OF TEN VARIED CHINESE SMALL SILVER WARES, BAO SHENG 寶升 MARK, 19/20TH C.
by Rob Michiels Auctions
Est: €400- €800
€3000 Bids
A LATE 19TH CENTURY CHINESE EXPORT SILVER FIGURAL CONDIMENT SET. 96 grams. 10.5 cm x 14 cm.
Apr 24, 10:00 AM BST
A LATE 19TH CENTURY CHINESE EXPORT SILVER FIGURAL CONDIMENT SET. 96 grams. 10.5 cm x 14 cm.
by Hannam's Auctioneers
Est: £40- £60
£300 Bids
Chinese Tibetan Silver Tiger Warrior Amulet Bar 130grams
May 09, 9:00 PM EDT
Chinese Tibetan Silver Tiger Warrior Amulet Bar 130grams
by Weatherham Estate Treasures
Est: $100- $200
$600 Bids
Chinese Export Sterling Silver Repousse Footed Box Early 20th Century
May 05, 10:30 AM PDT
Chinese Export Sterling Silver Repousse Footed Box Early 20th Century
by Global Auctions Company
Est: $400- $500
$3000 Bids
A Chinese silver miniature model, of a rickshaw, 7cm long, Wang Hing & Co, Hong Kong, c.1910; others (3)
May 01, 10:00 AM BST
A Chinese silver miniature model, of a rickshaw, 7cm long, Wang Hing & Co, Hong Kong, c.1910; others (3)
by Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd
Est: £80- £120
£800 Bids
A Chinese silver sweetmeat dish, shell feet, 19cm wide, Wang Hing & Co, Hong Kong, c.1920, 250g
May 01, 10:00 AM BST
A Chinese silver sweetmeat dish, shell feet, 19cm wide, Wang Hing & Co, Hong Kong, c.1920, 250g
by Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd
Est: £150- £200
£1500 Bids
Solid Tibetan Silver KYLIN Temple Guardian FOO DOGS
Apr 19, 10:00 AM EDT
Solid Tibetan Silver KYLIN Temple Guardian FOO DOGS
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$60 Bids
Wang Hing 90 Hong Kong Chinese Silver Overlay & Acid Etched Decanter
May 05, 10:00 AM PDT
Wang Hing 90 Hong Kong Chinese Silver Overlay & Acid Etched Decanter
by Taylor & Harris
Est: $200- $250
$2000 Bids
Lot 2 scent fishes
Apr 25, 11:00 AM CEST
Lot 2 scent fishes
by Henry's Auktionshaus
Est: €120- €480
€1200 Bids
Lot 2 scent fishes
Apr 25, 11:00 AM CEST
Lot 2 scent fishes
by Henry's Auktionshaus
Est: €120- €480
€1200 Bids
Silberbecher / A silver beaker, China, um 1900
Apr 20, 9:00 AM CEST
Silberbecher / A silver beaker, China, um 1900
by Auktionshaus Schwab
Est: €50- €100
€500 Bids
A RARE 19TH CENTURY CHINESE EXPORT SILVER ARCHAIC VESSEL AND COVER Qing. 78 grams. 8.25cm x 7.75 cm.
Apr 25, 10:00 AM BST
A RARE 19TH CENTURY CHINESE EXPORT SILVER ARCHAIC VESSEL AND COVER Qing. 78 grams. 8.25cm x 7.75 cm.
by Hannam's Auctioneers
Est: £50- £75
£300 Bids
Chinese Export Silver Wire Mesh Basket With Handle
Apr 18, 12:00 PM EDT
Chinese Export Silver Wire Mesh Basket With Handle
by Akiba Galleries
Est: $25- $250
$250 Bids
A TIBETAN SILVER PHURBA
Apr 27, 7:00 AM EDT
A TIBETAN SILVER PHURBA
by Ingenuity Gallery
Est: $2,500- $3,500
$3000 Bids
A Chinese Export 'dragon' silver cigarette case, Teh Ling
Apr 19, 9:30 AM PDT
A Chinese Export 'dragon' silver cigarette case, Teh Ling
by Clars Auctions
Est: $500- $700
$2500 Bids
A CHINESE EXPORT PIERCED SILVER BASKET BY WANG HING Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), 19th Century
Apr 29, 6:00 PM AEST
A CHINESE EXPORT PIERCED SILVER BASKET BY WANG HING Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), 19th Century
by Leonard Joel
Est: AUD800- AUD1,200
AUD7000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Chinese Export Silver


Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd

Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd

Hannam's Auctioneers

Hannam's Auctioneers

Weatherham Estate Treasures

Weatherham Estate Treasures

Clars Auctions

Clars Auctions