Snuff bottle with openwork design of dragons

Place made: 
Asia; China
Snuff bottle with openwork design of dragons, 19th century (Qing dynasty)
Hard-paste porcelain and wood; carved with turquoise glaze
Overall: 2 1/2 in x 1 1/2 and wood and in x 15/16 in; 6.4 cm x 3.8 cm x 2.4 cm; Base: 1/2 in x 1 3/4 in x 1 in; 1.3 cm x 4.4 cm x 2.5 cm (2 1/2 in [with stopper])
Bequest of Josephine Purtscher Fellows (Class of 1924)
MH 1986.33.338

This lovely bottle shows a ferocious dragon on one side and xiangyun (“auspicious clouds”) on the other. The delicate openwork decoration is achieved by carving away the clay while retaining the integrity of the interior compartment.