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The 'frog and foxes' game pie dish by Hugo Lonitz  & Co. is considered the masterpiece of the Neuhaldensleben factory. Lonitz exhibited alongside Minton and George Jones at a number of international exhibitions including the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition of 1876 and at the Melbourne Exhibition of 1880.

The 16in (40cm) tureen is beautifully modelled with a base of ducks chased around a sawn tree trunk by foxes that form the handles. A large naturalistic frog provides the finial to the lid.

The example offered at Clevedon Salerooms near Bristol on November 19 had been found in a modest apartment in Weston Super Mare.

Estimated at £400-600, it sold for £14,000 (plus 20% buyer's premium) to a private buyer.

The price was doubtless influenced by the performance of another version of the Lonitz tureen offered by US majolica specialists Strawser Auctions in Wolcottville, Indiana on October 31.

That example, one of only two known with its original liner, sold at $48,000/£32,000 (plus 18% buyer's premium).