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Most of the £271,210 total was provided by the opening 48 lots of paintings rather than the Fabergé eggs, decorative porcelain and silverwares that made up the bulk of the auction, but there was one notable exception. This was an extensive set of over 330 pieces of 19th century flatware, each bearing the initials JM. It comprised 304 pieces of silver gilt marked for Sazikov Moscow, 1846 with an Imperial warrant plus 35 parcel-gilt and nielloed dessert forks, knives and spoon marked Vologda 1843, all in a fitted case and adding up to 513oz of weighable silver.

With its eight salts, fish slices and ladles, there was plenty here for dining on a grand scale and it appealed to the tune of £20,000. As well as the quantities of porcelain eggs, the sale contained a number of porcelain figures that proved sought-after, most notably a 53/4in (15cm) high 19th century Gardner group of a young sleeping shepherd and small child, and a 41/4in (11cm) high equestrian figure of a Red Army soldier in white with a gilt helmet and painted face impressed in Cyrillic for the designer Natalia Y Danko, who worked from 1914 at the Imperial Porcelain factory and at its subsequent reincarnation as the State Porcelain factory.

The Gardner group more than doubled estimate at £1900, while the soldier easily outstripped modest expectations of just £200-300 to sell for £1800.