A Chinese vase has sold for £810,000 ($1m) at Fellows in Birmingham, a massive 450 times over its £1,800 ($2,237) valuation.
The wucai fish vase appeared to be a copy of an old design, hence its low estimate.
The vase turned out to be much older, and more valuable, than it first appeared
It transpires that it actually dates back to the 16th century and was made for Ming dynasty Emperor Jiajing (1521-1567).
Mark Huddleston of Fellows explained: “This vase was consigned via a Chinese client.
“Initial research when cataloguing had pointed to a number of historic precedents sold in the tens and hundreds of thousands.
“We examined the decoration to the collar and felt that it lacked sophistication of these early pieces.”
Huddleston went on to state that while Fellows had received phone calls from a number of interested parties before the sale, he and his team were completely unprepared for the result.
He said: “Bidding began at £1,000 and, with a handful of telephone bidders plus the usual hundreds online, predicting the final price became impossible.
“The most gratifying aspect is that a number of bidders were actually in the saleroom and had viewed it in person. One bidder even flew in from Japan and has a number of these in his collection.”
A vast amount of important Chinese porcelain was brought to Britain during the 19th century.
As personal wealth has increased in China, and thanks in large part to the internet, its value has increased exponentially as buyers seek to bring it home.
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