A glass snuff bottle, Chinese, 1700-1750.

The ochre body of the bottle is suffused with patches of bright red and yellow, in imitation of realgar, 5.8cm.

Attributed to Beijing.

Realgar is the name given to a toxic substance which was important in Daoist alchemical practice.

Its colours were widely admired by the Chinese literati and it was often imitated in glass.


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