Subject:Re: Brass or bronze with Chinese or Japanese mark
Posted By: Daniel Wed, Sep 13, 2017
I can only offer the fact this is a 16 character 'Da Ming Xuande' mark (which is upside down in the photo read from the right to left downwards). The Ming Xuande marks are the most common among bronze censers as this. The multi character mark is a bit more rare but exists. Here are a few examples of how these may read to give you an idea of the structure -
'Da Ming Xuande wunian Jiandu Gongbu guanchen Wu Bangzuo zao (Made by Wu Bangzuo, supervisor of the Ministry of Works, in the 5th year of Xuande of the Great Ming)'
'Da Ming Xuande yuannian Wuyingdian yong (Made for use in the Wuying Hall during the first year of the Xuande period of the Ming Dynasty)'
I am certain someone who can read this a bit better can explain what the rest translates as. These marks were very popular during the Qing dynasty to indicate the item was of a similar high quality as during the reign of the Ming Emperor Xuande but totally apocryphal. I am not an expert in bronze censers but this piece seems 20th century to me although it is nicely done the mark is quite rough though. Just look up 'Xuande marked censers' on google and I am sure you will come up with a group to compare your piece with. Hope that helps!