Just 2in (5.5cm) tall, it featured a musical movement revealed when the gilt metal liner was lifted but this was not now working. The floral enamelling was very finely done but it too had suffered damage.
“It would have been a phenomenally expensive piece in its day,” said auctioneer Christina Trevanion. “But it had a tough life, which is why I was modest in my estimate of £200-£300.”
However, despite the damage, the zarf appeared to benefit from what Trevanion described as “a huge demand at the moment for enamelled works of art” and it sold to the London trade at £1000 on February 10.