This Qianlong mark and period hat or wig stand sold for a massive £360,000 at a recent Cheffins sale in Cambridge.
The 11in (27cm) design combines a rare gilt café-au-lait ground
together with panels glazed to imitate turquoise. The upper
section, pierced to reveal the convolutions of dragons' bodies,
rotates and includes an aperture where perfumes were placed to
scent the Imperial hairpiece.
But it was in far from perfect condition - it had suffered a
less than clean break to the stem with the chips and losses crudely
"We put an estimate of £10,000-20,000 on it, but on the day of
the sale we had a lot of Chinese people in the room so we guessed
it might go for up to £50,000," said George Archdale, associate
partner at Cheffins.
"But the bidding just kept going up and up. The vendor [who was
in the room] was bouncing off the walls and went away with a spring
in his step."
The sale took place on March 27. The buyer's premium
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