ARITA c.1670 – 1700. Japanese Porcelain.

A Very Rare 17th Century Arita Porcelain Bottle Decorated in Blue and White with ‘The Star of David’ Within a Wreath. Thickly Potted and of Globular Shape, with a Tapering Neck Terminating with a Double Flanged Mouth.


Chip to rim c.6 x 4 mm. Fine glaze line to the neck c.38 mm.
Height : 24.5 cm (9 3/4 inches)
Stock number
For 17th century Arita Porcelain bottle for the Dutch market see : Fine and Curious, Japanese Export Porcelain in Dutch Collections (Christiaan J.A.Jorg,Hotei Publishing,2003. ISBN 90-74822-16-9) pages 218-223.



This very rare bottle relates to a well known group of 17th century Japanese porcelain bottles made at Arita between c.1670 and 1700 for the Dutch market. The form is based on Dutch glass bottles of the period. They occur as blanks to be used by Surgeon's shops at Batavia, on board ship or in the kitchen. A bottle of this form is depicted being used by the Japanese during a pick nick (see our Archive stock number 19870), the bottle depicted is clearly inscribed 'F.W.'. Indeed many of these bottles have initial, and according to Jorg (see reference below) 'F.W.' might refer to the contents, Franse Wijn (French Wine). Many of the initialled bottles, however, have the initials of the owners, rather than their contents. The present example is exceptional in that it has the Jewish design 'The Star of David' (Shield of David or Magen David in Hebrew), no other example appears to be known. Given that these bottles were made as special orders for the Dutch market it is possible that this bottle was made for a Dutch synagogue in Batavia or in Holland. .