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Chinese Vases

Chinese vases today are most reputably made out of porcelain or other types of ceramic. They are made for a variety of reasons: to hold spices and food, to hold fish, and for decoration, among others. The process of creating Chinese porcelain vases is considered awe-inspiring, but impressive vases in the past were also made from bronze and jade.

Bronze vases were often created in historical China, as early as 1650 B.C., for rituals and burials. Many Chinese bronze vases as well as other bronze vessels were found in the burial sights of the royal and noble. While the process behind these rituals is not well-documented, bronze vases were likely used to hold water or foods that were meant to be sacrificed during a ceremony, and not for consumption.

Similarly, jade vases were not likely used to hold anything for consumption, and were not historically used for the purpose of holding flowers. Instead, these sorts of objects were beautifully carved and rendered for those who had passed away, with hopes of bringing good luck.


Quick Facts

  • Many ancient Chinese bronze vases contained a “mask” motif. This motif stemmed from early Neolithic bronze and jade art, and was repeated in subsequent bronze and jade vase forms as a guardian or god that links the living to their ancestors
  • A common decorative detail of jade vases were handles with rings looped around. These rings were often carved out to show the skill of the artisan, since the rings, handles, and vase body needed to be carved from one single jade block
  • Early Chinese bronze vases often featured feet, likely made to be put over a flame to heat contents during a ritual. The handles on these vases were also made so that the vessel could be easily lifted from the heat source

Recommended Items at Auction

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Chinese Archaic Style Metal Vase, Footed Vessel and Lantern
Mar 05, 10:00 AM EST
Chinese Archaic Style Metal Vase, Footed Vessel and Lantern
by Weschler's
Est: $30- $50
$708 Bids
HETIAN JADE QILIN HANDLES LIDDED VASE
Mar 14, 9:00 AM EDT
HETIAN JADE QILIN HANDLES LIDDED VASE
by Lauren Gallery
Est: $400- $600
$3507 Bids
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Chinese Ming Dynasty Ceramic Foo Dogs Meiping Vase
Mar 12, 2:00 PM EDT
Chinese Ming Dynasty Ceramic Foo Dogs Meiping Vase
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $350- $800
$606 Bids
Chinese Pottery Glazed Narrow Neck Vase with Applied Dragon Detail
Mar 10, 7:00 PM AEDT
Chinese Pottery Glazed Narrow Neck Vase with Applied Dragon Detail
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD806 Bids
A HIGHLY UNUSUAL CHINESE ENAMEL EMBOSSED VASE, 18TH CENTURY
Mar 05, 1:00 PM GMT
A HIGHLY UNUSUAL CHINESE ENAMEL EMBOSSED VASE, 18TH CENTURY
by Plakas Auctions
Est: £300- £500
£6005 Bids
RARE - Early Chinese Bottle Vases
Mar 09, 10:00 AM EST
RARE - Early Chinese Bottle Vases
by Premier Auction Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$1604 Bids
Chinese blue and white dragon vase (60cm)
Mar 07, 10:00 AM AEDT
Chinese blue and white dragon vase (60cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD120- AUD160
AUD354 Bids
A Chinese Jun glazed lidded vase, with import seal to bottom (H:31.5cm)
Mar 07, 1:00 PM AEDT
A Chinese Jun glazed lidded vase, with import seal to bottom (H:31.5cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD100- AUD200
AUD254 Bids
Red and white dragon Chinese double gourd vase (42cm)
Mar 07, 10:00 AM AEDT
Red and white dragon Chinese double gourd vase (42cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD120- AUD160
AUD354 Bids
Wanli Floral Vase
Mar 07, 12:00 PM GMT
Wanli Floral Vase
by Orion Asian Art
Est: £0- £0
£5003 Bids
A CHINESE FLAMBÉ-GLAZED MEIPING 18TH CENTURY
Mar 05, 1:00 PM GMT
A CHINESE FLAMBÉ-GLAZED MEIPING 18TH CENTURY
by Plakas Auctions
Est: £400- £600
£3003 Bids
Two pairs of Chinese cloisonne vases (H: 22cm and 16cm)
Mar 07, 1:00 PM AEDT
Two pairs of Chinese cloisonne vases (H: 22cm and 16cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD80- AUD120
AUD703 Bids
Chinese Bronze Goose-Headed Zun Vessel
Mar 12, 11:00 AM EDT
Chinese Bronze Goose-Headed Zun Vessel
by Auctions at Showplace
Est: $200- $400
$1252 Bids
Fine Pair of Floral Cloisonne and Gilt Vases
Mar 09, 10:00 AM EST
Fine Pair of Floral Cloisonne and Gilt Vases
by Premier Auction Galleries
Est: $200- $400
$302 Bids
A CARVED SPINACH GREEN JADE GOLD DRAGON VASE
Mar 15, 9:00 AM EDT
A CARVED SPINACH GREEN JADE GOLD DRAGON VASE
by Lauren Gallery
Est: $600- $900
$3502 Bids
A CARVED JADE DRAGON VASE
Mar 14, 9:00 AM EDT
A CARVED JADE DRAGON VASE
by Lauren Gallery
Est: $1,000- $2,000
$4252 Bids
Large Qing Dynasty Chinese Cloisonne Bronze Vase
Mar 09, 10:00 AM EST
Large Qing Dynasty Chinese Cloisonne Bronze Vase
by Premier Auction Galleries
Est: $500- $1,000
$1102 Bids
Pair of Chinese Mirror Back Gilt Decorated Flower Vases
Mar 07, 12:00 PM GMT
Pair of Chinese Mirror Back Gilt Decorated Flower Vases
by Orion Asian Art
Est: £0- £0
£202 Bids
A pair of Chinese graduated miniature vases with certifications (H:11.5-11cm)
Mar 07, 1:00 PM AEDT
A pair of Chinese graduated miniature vases with certifications (H:11.5-11cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD60- AUD80
AUD252 Bids
Chinese White Jade Carved Vase With Cover
Mar 06, 10:00 AM CET
Chinese White Jade Carved Vase With Cover
by Artia Auktionshus
Est: €800- €1,200
€1,1002 Bids
A crackle glazed Chinese vase featuring Mao (H:25cm)
Mar 07, 1:00 PM AEDT
A crackle glazed Chinese vase featuring Mao (H:25cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD60- AUD80
AUD452 Bids
A dark blue glazed Chinese vase (H:25cm)
Mar 07, 1:00 PM AEDT
A dark blue glazed Chinese vase (H:25cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD100- AUD150
AUD202 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Chinese Vases


Mega International Auction

Mega International Auction

Merces Gallery LLC

Merces Gallery LLC

Walnut Tree Auction House, Inc

Walnut Tree Auction House, Inc

Adam's

Adam's