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The rare subject matter seems to have been the attraction to the four bidders from New York, Paris, Italy and the UK, who made up the competition. Rather than swimming fish and seaweed, it depicted pheasants in a landscape and had a registered patent date of 737418.
Making the winning bid way above the £250-400 estimate was a British collector.

Also attracting international interest at this Surrey sale – largely as a result of the global possibilities of the Internet – was a collection of Oriental works of art consigned by the estate of a local lady who had had an ambassadorial role in Hong Kong.

The Japanese pieces were particularly good. With a label marking it as formerly part of the well-known Michael Tomkinson collection, an 18th century ivory five-section inro carved with figures in a river landscape and mounted with a netsuke in the form of an animal seated upon a seal, sold to a private collector at £1200.