A Guyuexuan pheasant vase sold for HK$103m (£7.5m) at Sotheby’s Hong Kong.

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And the star of the four-day series from October 23-26 was a magnificent Guyuexuan 'pheasant' vase that sold for a hammer price of HK$103m (£7.5m) plus buyer's premium. This more than doubled the previous record for Qing porcelain and represented a high for any work of art sold in Asia.

The tiny vase, just 61/2in (16.5cm) high, dates from the reign of Qianlong. In fine condition, it is arguably the best example of the four known vases of this type.

The porcelain was fired in the Imperial kilns in Jingdezhen and then, unusually, shipped to the workshops within the Forbidden City in Beijing to be enameled under the direct supervision of the Emperor. Because of their colourful plumage, pheasants are a much admired motif but only appear on porcelain decorated in the Imperial workshops.

Only two vases of this type, similarly inscribed with an Imperial poem, have been offered at auction in the last 30 years. This particular vase was offered at Christie's in London in 1975, where it sold for £16,000 (£92,000 in today's money). Back then it was then bought by Roger Lam, a Hong Kong collector who formed a very impressive collection of Imperial porcelain.

The style of enamelling and decoration on this vase currently represents the pinnacle of Chinese taste.

On this occasion there was no Western interest. A Mainland Chinese collector was the first to raise his arm before a bidding battle lasting several tense minutes ensued between William Chak, the Hong Kong art dealer, in the room and a Hong Kong collector on the phone. Mr Chak, who was bidding for a Chinese collector, eventually triumphed.