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This Southern Song dynasty 12th/13th century Ge ware foliate dish, right, stole the limelight in Christie’s New York Chinese sale on March 24.

Measuring only 5 1/2in (14cm) in diameter, its satiny pale grey glaze was suffused with geyao’s trademark network of black and gold crackle that was intended to evoke the fissures of jade – China’s most prized material.

It was not until the Song dynasty that Chinese ceramics became valued in their own right as works of art and, together with Ru, Ding, Guan and Jun, Ge ware is one of the so-called ‘Five Classic Wares’ esteemed by the Song dynasty emperor and his elite.

In excellent condition, the dish also had the added cachet of previously being in the collection of Stephen Junkunc III, and latterly that of the New York collector CF Yau. Consigned by an American private vendor and estimated to fetch $400,000-500,000, it generated interest from Asian, US and European collectors but was secured by an Asian dealer in the room at $1.3m (£718,230).