The Flood of Gorkum 1741 :
The inscription has been translated by Dr C.J.A. Jorge in 1988 is what he describes as a a “free translation” ;
“In the year 1741, on New Year`s night, there was a very high water-flood in Gorkum and the surrounding country, such as happened never before, according to memory of the people, and many dykes broke down and much damage was done. In the year 1742, in the summer there was in the north and south Holland, a plague of mice, who ate the crops and such was never heard before”.
Mrs Helen Espir in her book `European Decoration on Oriental Porcelain, 1700 -1830` (Helen Espir, Jorge Welsh Books, 2005) describes the bowl thus ” One panel shows water pouring through the broken dyke beside windswept trees bending above the flood victims. Heads bob in the water, people and a dog clamber onto dry land helped by rescuers, while a baby in a basket is carried above the water to safety. The dramatic events are portrayed but not the terror of the dark night and the cold. On the other panel we see a huge mouse trap with one of the plague of mice on the now peaceful canal dyke. Gorinchem, an alternative spelling of Gorkum / Gorcum, is situated in the south east of the province of South Holland….. According to the `Chronicle of W.F. Emck`, 1927, these floods lasted from 23rd December 1740 to 3rd January 1741.”
Stock number: 23280.
`The Winds & the Dragon`, Loan exhibition of Chinese Export Art from West Country Collections 1601-1839, Holburne Museum, Bath 11th May – 23rd June 1985.
`East Meets West` . Over Decorated Chinese Porcelain, organised by the Oriental Ceramic Society, The British Museum, 1 October 2001 to 20 May 2002.