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“This is worth about half a mill”

Created on 01/11/2011 @ 15:41
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When Welshpool antiques appraiser Jeremy Rye was asked to value an English Dessert Service in a Shropshire house, something that was sitting on the floor caught his eye.
The 50cm vase (right) had been sitting on the floor virtually unnoticed for 30 years by its owners who thought it was only worth a few pounds. But a quick valuation revealed that it was a part of the Chinese Qianlong Period (1736-95) and is expected to fetch around £500,000 at Sotheby’s next week!
Mr Rye explained: “I had been called to appraise an English Dessert Service, but my eye was immediately drawn to the vase that was sitting on the floor. The owners had no idea of its value, and I suspect that they would have parted with it for a few hundred pounds!
“Unfortunately the owners do not know the exact story of the vase, but their ancestors traded in the Far East and were collectors, so presumably that is how it was acquired.
“These imperial-quality wares have always been sought after, but in the last 10 years, with the rise of the Chinese economy, their values have risen enormously. This vase also bears the reign mark of Qianlong which helps it enormously. Much Chinese porcelain is spuriously marked or as the Chinese potters claim, marked in the honour of the potting skills of their ancestors.”.
He continues: “The term doucai or ‘dovetailing colours’ is applied to a small group of top-quality porcelain, which was first produced for a short period during the Ming dynasty at the end of the 15th century, the style was revived in the Qing dynasty during the reign of Quianlong’s predecessor Kangxi.”
Mr Rye worked for Sotheby’s for 20 years but for the last 11 years he has run a Fine Art Agency from his Welshpool home. His clients include National Museums and the National Trust.
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