With its compressed circular body, chrysanthemum knop and C-scroll handle it bears outward similarities with a handful of other hugely valuable vessels, including the imperial white jade example sold for £1.75m by Woolley & Wallis in 2011.
However, although bearing a four-character mark of Qianlong mark to the base it is probably not of the period. The stone was described as “extremely pure stone with a soft polish and the colour fading to white”. It was estimated at £15,000-25,000 and bidding rose to £65,000.
Mallams’ (25% buyer’s premium) November 24-25 Asian & Islamic Art Sale in Cheltenham was topped by a much earlier handling jade. This tactile Tang-style pebble carving with greyish green and russet markings soared well above its top estimate of £1000 before selling to a UK phone bidder at £11,500. Carved as a mythical, reclining lion-like beast, it was dated to the late Ming period.