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This late 19th or early 20th century cloisonné two-handled tazza was reputedly a gift from the Chinese dowager empress Cixi (1835-1908).

As regent, she effectively controlled the Chinese government in the late Qing dynasty for almost half a century, from 1861 until her death in 1908.

The 16in (41cm) wide oval dish was apparently given to a maternal ancestor of the vendor’s husband during an audience with Cixi. It has two gilt dragon handles clasping the gilt rim and a central five-clawed yellow dragon flanked by eight blue dragons.

The tazza is estimated at £1500-2500 in Cheffins’ Oriental sale in Cambridge on August 10.

cheffins.co.uk or see this item on thesaleroom.com

This portrait miniature depicts Nathaniel Crew (1633-1721), one of the longest-serving bishops of the Church of England.

He served as Bishop of Oxford and latterly Durham during the most turbulent times in British history, witnessing the reigns of five monarchs, from Charles II to George I.

Painted by an unidentified hand, the 2¼in (6cm) watercolour on vellum is thought to date to the immediate years following the Restoration c.1660-70, when Crew was still a young man.

It is priced at £2950 from dealer Philip Mould in Pall Mall, London.


Silver dealer Koopman Rare Art, in Chancery Lane, London, is selling this silver mounted glass claret jug by Sheffield silversmith William & George Sissons.

Made in 1870, the 10½in (27cm) high piece is priced at £2500.


Staffordshire pottery specialists Alan Sturrock and Damon Revans-Turner of RTS Antiques in Kermincham, Cheshire, are selling this rhinoceros tureen.

The 9in (23cm) long piece is part of a small number of surviving tureens with wild animal covers made by the Staffordshire potters. The rhino is believed to be the rarest of them all, with this example thought to be only the second recorded.

“Animals are always popular among Staffordshire collectors, particularly the more obscure zoo or circus exhibits that fascinated the Victorian population,” says Sturrock.

The tureen is priced at £3500.