Cloisonne enamel box

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Postcard of Cloisonne enamel box.
© National Museums Scotland

Cloisonne enamel box

This circular box is made by the using the technique of cloisonne enamelling.

This colourfully enamelled box is decorated on the top with auspicious subjects including the pine tree, the deer, the buddha's hand citrons, the pair of mandarin ducks, and the lotus. They symbolise longevity, happiness in marriage, and purity.

Cloisonne enamelling is a technique whereby the design is first outlined by threads of copper wire, forming different cells, or cloisons, which are to be filled in with enamels. The fired enamels will be polished until they are flush with the cloisons.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-103-446-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  A.1874.30.7 A
Date: late 18th - early 19th century
Probably 18th century AD
Material: Cloisonne enamel
Dimensions: 5.50" H x 13.75" D overall
What: Box cover
Subject: Cloisonne
Where: China
Description: Circular box cover of cloisonne enamel: China, probably 18th century AD
  • Wilkinson, Jane and Nick Pearce. Harmony & Contrast: A Journey through East Asian Art. Edinburgh: NMS Publishing, 1996. 
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