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Both pieces had been purchased in Shanghai before the War by a relative of the vendors, Frederick Anderson, but while there was no doubt about the age of the yen yen vase – a standard format of famille verte from the Kangxi period (1662-1722) – the trade were flummoxed by the slim, ovoid shape of the other vase, an apparently unknown form of famille verte production. Discolouration of the enamel further aroused
suspicions, but when the trade viewed the vase for themselves a consensus was reached that the 17in (43cm) high vase was actually a very late example of famille verte, dating from the Yongzheng period.

While it was initially expected to fetch less money than the yen yen vase, its value was enhanced by this attribution and bidding from the London trade reached £5200. The 183/4in (47.5cm) yen yen vase achieved a standard price of £3600.