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Pair of Wall Pockets with Birds and Fruits
Item No. 19238

19th - 20th Century, N/A, China
10" x 0" x 0"
( 25.4 x 0 x 0 cm)
(H x W x D)

This ceramic wall pocket was used to set onto a wall to hold miscellaneous utilitarian objects, most likely chopsticks. It is designed in the form of a bird with one outstretched wing alit on a pair of citron fruits. Citron, an odd looking fruit and one of the oldest members of the citrus family is often referred to as Buddha’s Hand fruit or Buddha’s Hand Citron. It is believed to have originated in northeastern India, and it is thought to be the first citrus fruit known in Europe, having been brought from the Asian continent by the Greeks and Romans. Although it smells strongly of lemon, it has no juicy pulp beneath its rind. Instead, the Buddha’s Hand Citron historically has been used for its powerful zest which has been used to flavor drinks and provide lemon scent to cosmetics. Chinese and Japanese households hang it in their homes as a natural air freshener and to perfume clothes.

The pocket is highly decorative, painted in bright hues of yellows, greens, blues and shades of brown. It is one of a pair of wall pockets.

This piece is probably a form of Shiwan ware, popular in China during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

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