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Bearing a Qianlong mark and probably of period, the 14½in (35cm) tall vase was a rare piece similar to one in the Shanghai Museum.

Hamman’s was aware of what it had and estimated the vase at £15,000- 20,000, hoping for more, but was delighted when it went over the phone to a Far Eastern buyer at £110,000.

A real surprise from the same source was a large porcelain panel painted with a temple in a hongmu hardwood frame. Catalogued as Daoguang (1821-50), the 19½in tall panel was estimated at £200-300 but went to an Eastern buyer via thesalerooom.com at £17,000.

Buddhistic deity

Entered by a London collector, a polychromed lacquer bronze of a Buddhistic deity bearing the Qianlong mark and probably of the period brought further eastern delight.

Modelled with one hand raised and on a lotus capped base, the 7in tall x 4¼in wide (18 x 11cm) figure estimated at £3000-5000 went back east at £26,000.