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Inscription

in standard script on the base in underglaze blue in two columns of three characters each: Da Ming Wanli nian zhi (made in the Wanli reign of the great Ming dynasty)

Provenance

George Eumorfopoulos [1863-1939], London. (Parish-Watson Gallery, New York); sold to Harry G. Steele [1881-1942], Pasadena; his widow, Grace C. Steele [d. 1974]; gift 1972 to NGA.

Bibliography
1925
Hobson, R.L. The George Eumorfopoulos Collection: Catalogue of the Chinese, Corean and Persian Pottery and Porcelains, 6 vols. London, 1925-1928: 4:color pl. 23, no. D115.
1998
Bower, Virginia, Josephine Hadley Knapp, Stephen Little, and Robert Wilson Torchia. Decorative Arts, Part II: Far Eastern Ceramics and Paintings; Persian and Indian Rugs and Carpets. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1998: 40-41, color repro.
Technical Summary

The vase has two damaged areas along the lip, which have been filled and painted. The ten iron staples around the foot may have been inserted shortly after manufacture to secure the crack that appeared after firing.