It lent itself well to figures of mythology and the talents of French émigré sculptors such as Carrier-Belleuse.

Between 1846-1910 some 500 or more models were created by the factory.

The 17in (43cm) figure of a youthful Bacchus offered by Mitchells (22% buyer’s premium) in Cockermouth on December 9 with a guide of £150-250 sold on thesaleroom.com for £2500.

The model, copying one of a pair of bronze statuettes of Bacchus and Ondine by Jean Baptiste Jule Klagmann (1810-67) exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1859, was first recorded in the Minton shape book in 1861.

Belleek rarity

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Belleek parian figure neoclassical figure of a nude, £1000 at Richard Winterton.

A rare Belleek parian figure from the First Period (1863-90) of production at the Fermanagh factory sold for a surprise £1000 at Richard Winterton (24% inc VAT buyer’s premium) in Lichfield on November 30. The estimate was £30-40.

This 12in (30cm) neoclassical figure of a nude, with a draped robe highlighted in pink, carries only the impressed marks Belleek Co Fermanagh. It is similar but slightly smaller than the better-known models titled Meditation and Affection.