REF No. 5298
Chinese export porcelain pseudo armorial plate
Qianlong period, circa 1750
Diameter: 9 inches; 23cm
Unusual Chinese plate made for the Dutch Market,
painted in polychrome with a central coronet with the name Wouter Verhagen, surrounded by cherubs in flight, all within scrolling leaf and spearhead borders.
It is not clear exactly who ordered this - as the name is fairly common. One was Burgermaster of Grevelduin-Capelle in 1748. There is another plate of the same period with the name Wouter Verhage (which could be a mis-spelling) on it and a grisaille semi-erotic scene, dated 1752, attributed to a print by Bernard Picart. This is linked with a very similar example with the name Maretie van Beme. No marriage between the two - or connection with this plate has been discovered! Unfortunately both Vergahe and Verhagen are common names in The Netherlands.
The design is extremely rare and no other examples are recorded in the literature. It is an unusual composition, attempting to resemble an armorial and quite loosely drawn. It is possible that this was a drawing by a supercargo or captain in the VOC and was a very small private order, perhaps by a descendant of Steven Verhagen (also known as van der hagen) (1563-1621) the first Admiral of the VOC.