This English porcelain coffee cup, bought by a dealer for only £15, sold at £7800 at Bamfords sale in Derby on July 25.

Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

The so-called Girl in a Swing factory (1749-c.1759) is perhaps best known for 'toys', figures and bird models (made in a porcelain with a particularly high lead content) and these far outnumber surviving tablewares.

This simple cup in the Chelsea style, decorated only with three enamel floral sprays and chipped to the footrim, was deemed exceptionally rare and a great find for a dealer who had bought it recently for just £15 in a boxed lot at a Nottingham saleroom.

At the Derby sale it was competed by several specialist dealers before selling to a member of the London trade at a wholly unexpected £7800.