Description: A large blue & white pottery shipwreck bowl with a central medallion in the interior showing a stylised crane standing in a river surrounded by reeds and foliage, within three circles, and a thin trellis-like painted band in the interior of the rim. The exterior painted with four lilies between four pairs of stylised swimming cranes. The foot reserved and holding grit from the kiln. The bowl is quite freely painted and has a dull patina. A small square-shaped chip to the rim, otherwise condition good. From the Binh Thuan shipwreck, Vietnam.
Size: 198 mm/7.8 ins. in diameter and 93 mm/3.7 ins. in height
Culture: Chinese, shipwreck ceramic
Date: c. 1608 A.D.
Notes: The Binh Thuan shipwreck was discovered in early 2001 by local fishermen while trying to untangle a trawl net caught on the wreck, which lies in 41 m (135 ft) of water, about 65 km (40 miles) off the coast of Binh Thuan province, Vietnam. The wreck is that of a Chinese junk which archival evidence suggests was transporting silk and ceramics from Zhangzhou in southern China to Johore, Malaysia, for the Dutch market, which sank in 1608. About half of the ceramics recovered from the wreck were retained for Vietnam museums and the remaining pieces auctioned by Christie’s in Melbourne, Australia, in March 2004, realising 2 million Australian dollars (just over one million GBP).