Doulton salt-glazed portrait jug of Nelson, £3200 at Thomson Roddick.

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First issued c.1821, a year after a gifted young potter John Doulton had partnered with his older ex-foreman, John Watts, it was made in a number of different styles and sizes.

The most common variant is a bust portrait (one that was reissued by Doulton around the time of the Trafalgar centenary) but this version, measuring an impressive 19in (42cm) high, depicts the admiral in half-length wearing full awards and decorations.

It is inscribed to one medal Nile 1798 and to the base Trafalgar 1805, England expects every man to do his duty.

This half-length model is sometimes seen as a jug with a handle but is particularly rare in this bottle form – the cockade of the bicorne hat forming the neck.

While a Doulton & Watts bust portrait jug might bring under £200 today, this one, offered at Thomson Roddick (20% buyer’s premium) in Carlisle on July 13, was estimated at £400-500.

In fact, helped by its good condition and excellent glaze, it brought an impressive £3200 – nigh on twice as much as a handful of others of this type have achieved in recent years.