Our catalogue > Straits Chinese Items

Most of our clients for Straits Chinese items are based in Singapore & Malaysia. Singapore’s Peranakan Museum is among our clients.

The Straits Chinese, also known as the nonyas (for the females) and the babas (the men), as well as the Peranakan Chinese of Indonesia, are the localised Chinese who have been in Southeast Asia for many generations and whose cultures became a blend of Chinese and Malay & Javanese characteristics. They differ to the more newly arrived Chinese (referred to as the sinkeh or totoks) because of this acculturation.

The objects here were made by, or for, members of the localised Chinese communities of Southeast Asia.

All the items have been sourced from within the UK, often from old colonial-era collections, and all items are available for sale right now.

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5905

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Straits Chinese Gilded & Lacquered Carved Wooden Offering Stand & Box & Pewter Tray (Chanab)

Used by the Straits Chinese (Babas/Nonyas) of the Straits Settlements of Penang, Malacca & Singapore & also the Peranakan Chinese of Indonesia. Possibly made in Southern China for this export market.
circa 1900

height: 40cm, length: 35.6cm, width: 11.8cm

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Provenance

UK art market

5322

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Straits Chinese Groom’s Double-Sided, Finely Embroidered Blue Wedding Sash

Straits Chinese, Straits Settlements (Singapore, Penang, Malacca)
late 19th or early 20th century

length: 197cm, width: 6.5cm

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Provenance

Acquired by a colonial administrator in the early 20th century, and has been in England since.

5908

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Peranakan Lady’s Beaded Purse

Peranakan People, Straits Settlements or West Sumatra, Indonesia
circa 1920

width when opened out: 14.5cm, length: 10cm

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Provenance

private collection, England

5319

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Finely Embroidered Straits Chinese Silk Wedding Valance

Straits Chinese, Straits Settlements (Singapore, Penang, Malacca)
circa 1900

wdith: 175cm, length (including tassel hangings): 103cm

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Provenance

Acquired by a colonial administrator in the early 20th century, and has been in England since.

5316

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Finely Embroidered Straits Chinese Silk Wedding Valance

Straits Chinese, Straits Settlements (Singapore, Penang, Malacca)
circa 1900

width: 95cm, length; 58cm

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Provenance

Acquired by a colonial administrator in the early 20th century, and has been in England since.

5810

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Glass Beaded Wedding Slippers (Kasut Manek)

Straits Chinese Community, Singapore, Malacca or Penang
circa 1920

length: 25cm

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Provenance

UK art market

5315

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Embroidered Chinese Wall Hanging with Shou (寿) & other Deities

China, exported to the Straits Settlements
early 20th century

dimensions of backing material: 120cm x 84cm

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Provenance

collected by Alwyn Sidney Haynes (1878-1963), and thence by descent. Haynes was a colonial administrator in Malaya and the Straits Settlements between 1901 and 1934. He held many posts including Acting British Resident, Pahang (1924); British Resident, Perak (1925); British Advisor, Kedah (1925); British Advisor, Kelantan (1930); and Acting Colonial Administrator, Straits Settlements (1933), after which he retired and returned to England, and lived near Stratford-upon-Avon, and then in Leamington Spa. Haynes loaned some of the items he collected in Malaya to the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford in 1939. He was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1950.

2681

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Inscribed Peranakan Chinese Silver Ritual Ewer

Peranakan Chinese Community, Java, Indonesia
circa 1920

height: 12cm, weight: 151g

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Provenance

private collection, London, UK.

1944

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Straits Chinese ‘Brown & Gold’ Ancestral Shrine Cabinet

Straits Chinese community, Straits Settlements (Malacca, Penang, Singapore)
19th century

height: 81cm, width: 70cm, depth: 47cm

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Provenance

UK art market

2600

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Straits Chinese Lacquered & Gilded Ancestral Shrine Cabinet

Southern China for the Straits Chinese Market
circa 1900

height: 43.5cm, width: 34.5cm, thickness: 15cm

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Provenance

UK art market

4021

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Carved & Polychrome Image of Chu-sheng Niang-niang (the Goddess who Registers Births), Fuzhou Chinese, early 20th century

Hokkien, Teochiu & Fuzhou Chinese Communities in Southeast Asia & China
early 20th century

height: 27cm, width: 14cm

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Provenance

Private Collection, Keith Stevens, UK.

5304

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Pair of Chinese Embroidered Slippers

Straits Settlements or China
early 20th century

length: 25.3cm

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Provenance

collected by Alwyn Sidney Haynes (1878-1963), and thence by descent. Haynes was a colonial administrator in Malaya and the Straits Settlements between 1901 and 1934. He held many posts including Acting British Resident, Pahang (1924); British Resident, Perak (1925); British Advisor, Kedah (1925); British Advisor, Kelantan (1930); and Acting Colonial Administrator, Straits Settlements (1933), after which he retired and returned to England, and lived near Stratford-upon-Avon, and then in Leamington Spa.  Haynes loaned some of the items he collected in Malaya to the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford in 1939. He was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1950.

5239

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Chinese Lacquered, Carved Wooden Image Possibly of Pi Lu Zhe Nafo (Vairocana)

Malaya or China
circa 1900

height: 28cm, width: 13cm, depth: 12.2cm

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Provenance

collected by Alwyn Sidney Haynes (1878-1963), and thence by descent. Haynes was a colonial administrator in Malaya and the Straits Settlements between 1901 and 1934. He held many posts including Acting British Resident, Pahang (1924); British Resident, Perak (1925); British Advisor, Kedah (1925); British Advisor, Kelantan (1930); and Acting Colonial Administrator, Straits Settlements (1933), after which he retired and returned to England, and lived near Stratford-upon-Avon, and then in Leamington Spa. Haynes loaned some of the items he collected in Malaya to the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford in 1939. He was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1950.

4416

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Kendi with Green-Glazed Chinese Earthenware & Engraved Brass Mounts

Java, Indonesia
19th century

height: 21cm, width 24cm

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Provenance

private collection, UK.