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The lack of Chinese mark and period in this New York Asian series heightened appetites for the imperial porcelain available and the double gourd vase was, without question, the best quality Chinese ceramic entry of the week. Decorated with a single vine of double gourds cascading from the rim in a dense leafy foliage that partially obscured the nine auspicious bats, its poor condition did not seriously detract from its desirability. Its low $30,000-40,000 estimate reflected the fact that the Qianlong reign mark had been ground down, some of the enamelling had crawled, and there was some chipping to the neck.

Consigned by New York collector, the Hon. Ogden Reid, it is rare to find this enamelled design on this shape. It was contested by the Asian trade and collectors and secured on the telephone by Hong Kong dealer Chak’s Gallery for $305,000 (£203,335).