Plate decorated en grisaille and in iron-red, flesh tones, and gold, with shell-and scroll border on the rim, spearheads at the well, and central scene of two figures embracing beneath a canopy by a river with buildings beyond and on the opposite shore.
This scene of an amorous young couple is a representation of Vertumnus and Pomona, a subject made popular by Ovid in the Metamorphoses. To woo Pamona, Vertumnus assumed many forms, including those of a reaper, herdsman, and fisherman. Finally winning her confidence in the guise of a harmless old woman, Vertumnus reveals himself to Pomona in all his radiant youth.
A similarly composed scene, also found on export ware, illustrates the biblical account (Genesis 38) of the seduction of Judah by Tamar, who disguises herself as a harlot.
As rendered by the Chinese artist, the two scenes are nearly the same; only the features and costumes of the figures distinguish them as separate representations of romantic seduction. ALthough a direct source has not been found for either scene, both subjects are depicted by Abraham Bloemaert (1566-1651).
|Year Range from||1745|
|Year Range to||1755|
|Place of Origin||Made in Jingdezhen, China|
|Collection||The Reeves Center|
|Credit line||Mr. and Mrs. Euchlin D. Reeves Collection in memory of Mrs. Chester Green Reeves and Miss Lizzie H. Dyer|