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In fact, it is quite possible that this glass was made with the intention of testing a gentleman’s ability to sink the draught in one breath.

“A fore-runner of the yard of ale,” said Fergus Gambon of Phillips, who had the pleasure of selling the piece as part of an unusual collection of oversized drinking glasses at the Bond Street salerooms on June 6.

The glass measured 14in (35.5cm) high, compared with the average of 8in (20cm) for standard ale glasses, and it would have been quite tricky to make.

Standard ale glasses of this period might be expected to raise £250-280, but interest in this mammoth example pushed bidding to £1300 (plus 15 per cent buyer’s premium).