A Chinese shipwreck saucer from the Ca Mau shipwreck, c. 1725 A.D.

A Chinese shipwreck saucer from the Ca Mau shipwreck, c. 1725 A.D.

Code: 2861


Description: A blue & white pottery shipwreck saucer showing a river landscape scene (‘passing boats’ type) with a patterned band below the rim and dull patina. The underside painted brown with the base reserved.  Scattered patchy marine encrustation on both sides, a couple of minute rim chips, otherwise condition good. A Sotheby’s auction label and the ‘CM’ reference number of the Vietnamese conservators on the base. From the Ca Mau shipwreck, Vietnam.

Size: 110 mm/4.3 ins. in diameter

Culture: Chinese, shipwreck ceramic

Date: c. 1725 A.D.

Notes: The Ca Mau shipwreck was discovered in 1998 near Ca Mau in southern Vietnam by local fishermen. The ship, an ocean-going junk, probably sank around 1725, after an onboard fire so severe that some of the porcelain fused together, en route from Canton (now Guangzhou) to the Dutch trading port of Batavia (now Jakarta) in Indonesia. Some 130,000 ceramics were salvaged from the wreck, the bulk of which, mostly tea bowls and saucers, were originally destined for European markets. On 29-31 January 2007, 76,000 of the finer pieces were auctioned by Sotheby’s Amsterdam.

Shipwreck ceramics with marine encrustation are particularly sought after.