FOUND > Attic Vase Fetches $19-Million

Kept in an old shoe-box, because nobody liked it

Rare 18th-century Chinese vase found in an attic.

Updated - June 12, 2018
By James Massey, What Sells Best News

PARIS - Sotheby's reports a rare vase discovered by chance in the attic of a family home, has fetched $19 million (€16.18 million) at auction.

THE DISCOVERY

The vase was left to the current owners grandparents by an uncle. Then, put away in an old shoe-box in the attic. According to a GeoBeats News report, it was because nobody in the family liked it.

The story of the vase discovery as told by Sotheby's.

It wasn't until the vase was taken to Sotheby's Paris office (still in the shoe-box) for a valuation. That the unsuspecting owners had any idea of its true value.

When Sotheby’s specialist Olivier Valmier, opened the box to take a look. He was immediately struck by the quality of the vases craftsmanship.

Research later revealed the 11-inch vase was 18th-century, and extremely rare. Produced for the Qianlong Emperor, by the finest craftsmen of the time.

WHY IT’S VALUABLE

According to Henry Howard-Sneyd, Sotheby's Chairman of Asian Art, Europe and Americas. Chinese art items are extremely sought after by collectors in todays marketplace.

“Chinese art has been admired and collected across Europe for centuries, but the importance of certain pieces is occasionally lost over time. Given the huge appetite for Chinese art among today’s collectors, now is the moment to scour your homes and attics, and to come to us with anything you might find!"

Sotheby's Asian art specialist can be found at the bottom of their press release here. You can also find information for free auction appraisals by other top auction houses, here.

SALE INFORMATION

The vase was sold for $19 million (€16.18 million) after buyer premium, by Sotheby's in Paris on June 12. The presale estimate was $600,000 to $850,000. The vase can be viewed further on Sotheby's website, here.

After the sale, we'll update this story with the final sale results. Sign up for our free treasure alerts to avoid missing the update and/or the discovery of other treasures.

Also, be sure to check out the following research tools and resources, which could help you find your next treasure.

FREE TOOLS & RESEARCH

RESEARCH SOLD PRICES - This gives you a general understanding of current market value, or the highest amounts people may be willing to pay for a particular item.

Comparing sold prices fetched by a variety of auction houses, can also help you determine which auction houses are having the greatest success promoting a particular type of item.

FREE APPRAISALS - Small details can make a big difference in a rare items price, and with forgers sometimes trying to cash in on rare items, it can be helpful to have a reputable expert take a look.



If you think you have something, one of the fastest ways to find out if it may be authentic, and valuable, is to head to our free appraisals page and check with several of the experts listed within the pottery and glass category.

MONITOR PRICES - Another way to monitor the price strength of more common ceramic items, is to keep an eye on the highest bid items in eBay's Ceramic and Asian Antique categories, as well as the antique Chinese vases (below).


HIGH BID > Qianlong Era
| 18th-Century (Reset)

Nice large Chinese porcelain vase, fine painted figures,19th ct.

Time Left: 1d 10h 25m
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Nice huge multi colour rose vase, antiques, 19th century.

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Chinese Porcelain Antique Jardiniere Planter Figures, flowers, Vases beautiful

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Nice huge multi colour rose vase, figures, 19th century. signed.

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Antique Chinese Qing rock crystal carved vase 6” wide over elephant handles

Time Left: 3d 23h 15m
$650.00 with 1 bids


Estate Old House Chinese Antique Porcelain Vase Blue Kangxi Marked Asian China

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19th C. Pair Chinese Famille-Rose Foliate Rim Vases

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Nice huge multi colour rose vase, playing children, 19th century.

Time Left: 1d 10h 21m
$510.00 with 15 bids


Nice Chinese Blue & White porcelain jar, figures, ca. 1700, Kangxi period.

Time Left: 1d 10h 27m
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Estate Old House Chinese 4 Hand painted 567 Porcelain Plaques Signed Asian China

Time Left: 1d 12h 57m
$482.00 with 20 bids


Chinese Kangxi Vase

Time Left: 1d 8h 59m
$440.00 with 24 bids


Nice fine painted Chinese B&W porcelain vase, ca. 1900.

Time Left: 1d 10h 17m
$430.00 with 28 bids


antique old stock natural red coral necklace and broch LAST STOCK!

Time Left: 1d 3h 25m
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Nice rare large Chinese B&W porcelain kendi, Kangxi, early 18th century.

Time Left: 1d 9h 56m
$401.00 with 55 bids


Peranakan Nyonya Straits Chinese Famille Rose Phoenix Peony Jar

Time Left: 1d 9h 46m
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Nice Chinese Blue & White porcelain vase, figures in river landscape, 19th ct

Time Left: 1d 10h 18m
$343.00 with 31 bids


Antique 19thC Chinese Da Qing Kangxi Revival Porcelain Vase Blue Landscape, NR

Time Left: 1d 11h 6m
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antique old stock natural red coral necklace other coral cabochons gold sale

Time Left: 1d 3h 9m
$334.00 with 14 bids


Unusual Qianjiang Chinese Hexagonal Vase

Time Left: 2d 11h 28m
$323.26 with 5 bids


rare Chinese Ming or Kangxi vase

Time Left: 4h 46m
$305.00 with 26 bids


20th C. Chinese Pair Famille-Rose Porcelain Vases

Time Left: 1d 44m
$305.00 with 14 bids


Large Chinese Qing Dragon Vase

Time Left: 4d 14h 31m
$305.00 with 28 bids


ANTIQUE 11" CHINESE ART POTTERY SCULPTED VASES RELIEF CRANES LOTUS FLOWERS

Time Left: 3h 54m
$299.99 with 1 bids


Antique Chinese 18th Or 19th Sang De Yaobian Glazed Vase

Time Left: 3h 46m
$295.00 with 17 bids


beautiful pair chinese doucai porcelain bowl bearing yongzheng marks yungchen

Time Left: 6h 2m
$293.01 with 30 bids


Nice Chinese Famille rose vase, figures, 19th century.

Time Left: 1d 9h 55m
$258.00 with 27 bids


LARGE EARLY THAI BRONZE TEMPLE SIZE BUDDHA FIGURE MING DYNASTY

Time Left: 9d 12h 8m
$255.00 with 2 bids


Pair Antique Chinese Porcelain Vases Lamps Scholars Objects

Time Left: 2d 12h 32m
$250.00 with 1 bids


Pair Of Chinese Late Qing Famille Rose Jars

Time Left: 4h 31m
$224.50 with 10 bids


Antique Chinese Blue And White Vase With Seven Ladies 34cm

Time Left: 4d 17h 10m
$222.94 with 14 bids


ANTIQUE CHINESE QING NINE IMPERIAL DRAGON PRINCE COURT SILK ROBE GOLD THREAD

Time Left: 9d 12h 2m
$222.50 with 9 bids


LARGE ANTIQUE CHINESE QING CLOISONNE ENAMEL GOLD GILT BRONZE DRAGON CENSER VASE

Time Left: 9d 12h 13m
$216.00 with 31 bids


Large Antique Chinese Blue And White Vase

Time Left: 4d 17h 24m
$210.20 with 23 bids


LARGE CHINESE CARVD WHITE RUSSET JADE ARCHAIC DRAGON HUANG PENDANT MING DYNASTY

Time Left: 9d 11h 44m
$205.50 with 20 bids


Monumental Chinese Flambe 15" Flaired Bottle Neck Vase 4-Character Mark

Time Left: 4d 5h 26m
$200.00 with 1 bids


BEAUTIFUL ANTIQUE CHINESE GREEN POTTERY VASE LEAVE DESIGN

Time Left: 5h 29m
$199.88 with 1 bids


12” 1893 Guan Yao Nei Zao Chinese Imperial Kiln Famille Rose Porcelain Poem Vase

Time Left: 1d 6h 54m
$195.50 with 51 bids


19th C. Chinese Blue White and Red FULUSHOU Hat Stand

Time Left: 1d 25m
$190.50 with 47 bids


19th-20th C. PAIR FAMILLE ROSE JARS and COVERS

Time Left: 1d 31m
$190.50 with 22 bids


19thC Antique Signed Chinese Blue White Porcelain Vase, w/ Lions & Dragons

Time Left: 1d 10h 58m
$170.50 with 29 bids


Nice Famille rose café au lait vase with cover, bird & flowers, 18th century.

Time Left: 1d 10h 7m
$158.50 with 30 bids


Pair RARE VINTAGE CHINESE CINNABAR HAND CARVED VASES 20TH CENTURY Excellent

Time Left: 3d 11h 47m
$157.50 with 3 bids


Gump's Chinese Porcelain Umbrella Stand Floor Vase from the Anne Anka Estate

Time Left: 1d 6h 31m
$152.50 with 2 bids


Very Large Antique Old Chinese Bronze Made Vase Pot Statue Collectibles

Time Left: 3d 12h 13m
$152.50 with 7 bids


Antique China TOP HIGH AGED MING DYNASTY LONGQUAN DECORATED GREEN GLAZED VASE

Time Left: 2d 4h 41m
$149.90 with 1 bids


early 1900's antique Chinese famille rose vase 10"

Time Left: 2h 43m
$149.00 with 1 bids


MAGNIFICENT ANTIQUE CHINESE PORCELAIN PLAQUE FAMILLE ROSE MARKED WANG YETING J68

Time Left: 10h 31m
$146.50 with 11 bids


RARE VINTAGE CHINESE PAIR OF CINNABAR HAND CARVED VASES 20TH CENTURY

Time Left: 1d 11h 56m
$146.50 with 5 bids


19th C. Chinese Blue and White Celadon Covered Vase

Time Left: 1d 34m
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TWO BEAUTIFUL antique CHINESE PORCELAIN CRACKLE GLAZE FAMILLE ROSE VASES 1800s

Time Left: 1d 5h 14m
$132.50 with 9 bids


A LARGE 19TH C QING CHINESE FAMILLE VERTE PORCELAIN HAND PAINTED JARDINIERE BOWL

Time Left: 23h 5m
$131.22 with 38 bids


ELEGANT ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED QIANLONG W7183

Time Left: 10h 3m
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Chinese 19thc Crackle Glaze Blue And White Ginger Jar With Hard Wood Stand

Time Left: 22h 34m
$127.40 with 15 bids


MAGNIFICENT ANTIQUE CHINESE BLUE AND WHITE PORCELAIN VASE RARE G5165

Time Left: 10h 29m
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A BEAUTIFUL antique CHINESE PORCELAIN VASE CORAL RED 黃 金盛 號 監造 1916

Time Left: 1d 5h 1m
$122.50 with 5 bids


VFINE CHINESE FILIGREE SILVER ENAMEL WHITE EMERALD JADEITE BANGLES TEA CADDY JAR

Time Left: 9d 11h 58m
$122.50 with 12 bids


VRARE 18/19THC CHINESE AUTHENTIC SPINACH JADE ROCKY MOUNTAIN PINE TREE FORM VASE

Time Left: 9d 11h 42m
$118.50 with 4 bids


18th/19th C. GILT POWDER BLUE GLAZED BALUSTER COVERED VASE

Time Left: 1d 40m
$114.50 with 12 bids


F069: Chinese porcelain flower vase with beautiful SHINSHA glaze and squirrel

Time Left: 1d 14h 19m
$113.50 with 6 bids


SUPERB 18/19THC CHINESE JADE & ICY WHITE JADEITE PLAQUE SCEPTER TABLE SCREEN

Time Left: 9d 11h 36m
$113.50 with 5 bids


LARGE 19THC CHINESE QING DYNASTY LIGHT CELADON JADE PEACHES BAT HARDWOOD SCEPTER

Time Left: 9d 11h 41m
$113.50 with 40 bids


VERY RARE 18/19THC CHINESE IMPERIAL CELADON JADE PIERCED LOTUS VASE CENSER STAND

Time Left: 9d 11h 43m
$113.50 with 5 bids


OLD CHINESE JADE STONE BUDDHIST BEAST LION FIGURE DAVID PERCIVAL COLLECTION

Time Left: 9d 12h 45m
$113.50 with 2 bids


LARGE 19THC CHINESE QING LIGHT CELADON JADE FLOWERING VASE HUANGHUALI SCEPTER

Time Left: 9d 11h 40m
$111.00 with 5 bids


VERY EARLY CHINESE RED & BLACK CIXI LACQUER SCEPTER WHISK SONG MING DYNASTY

Time Left: 9d 12h 6m
$110.50 with 5 bids


IMPORTANT CHINESE IMPERIAL HUANGHUALI SIDE TABLES THRONE STOOLS MING EARLY QING

Time Left: 9d 11h 24m
$102.00 with 5 bids


FANCY ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED XIONG MENGTING H9289

Time Left: 10h 5m
$100.00 with 7 bids


RARE ANTIQUE CHINESE PORCELAIN PLAQUE FAMILLE ROSE FRAMED MARKED LIU YUCEN N278

Time Left: 10h 33m
$100.00 with 6 bids


Vintage Chinese Pair Famille Rose Verte Porcelain vases

Time Left: 2d 1h 8m
$100.00 with 2 bids


chinese vase chinese porcelain vase

Time Left: 7d 23h 2m
$100.00 with 1 bids


Antique Chinese Underglaze Blue White Ginger Jar Tea Urn Lid Bird Marked D9

Time Left: 1d 8h 44m
$99.99 with 1 bids


Antique 19th C CHINESE Blue White Celadon PORCELAIN Vase

Time Left: 1d 2h 27m
$99.00 with 1 bids


18th Century Chinese Blue & White Guglet Vase China Antique

Time Left: 2d 13h 57m
$99.00 with 1 bids


RARE ANTIQUE CHINESE POLYCHROME PORCELAIN VASE MARKED HONGZHI RARE E6871

Time Left: 10h 1m
$98.00 with 3 bids


FINE ANTIQUE CHINESE PORCELAIN PLAQUE FAMILLE ROSE MARKED MASTER WANG DAFAN Y926

Time Left: 10h 32m
$98.00 with 5 bids


Chinese Porcelain Coral Red Orange Ground Famille Rose Dragon Vase

Time Left: 1d 9h 51m
$95.00 with 1 bids


Pair Early 20thC FAMILLE ROSE Vase Lamps BIRDS & FLORAL TREES Rewired GORGEOUS

Time Left: 1d 10h 46m
$95.00 with 1 bids


EXCELLENT 19th C CHINESE TONGZHI MARKED FAMILLE ROSE BOWL WITH FISH

Time Left: 5d 29m
$93.00 with 17 bids


Nice rare large Chinese Famille rose porcelain kendi, flowers, 18th century.

Time Left: 1d 9h 46m
$90.00 with 26 bids


Beautiful Antique Chinese Tapered Square Vase. Floral & Birds.c. 1912-40

Time Left: 1d 10h 27m
$88.00 with 1 bids


antique old stock natural red coral necklace other cabochons sale LAST STOCK!

Time Left: 1d 3h 12m
$86.00 with 10 bids


Nice large Chinese porcelain vase, kylin,19th ct. signed.

Time Left: 1d 10h
$84.00 with 9 bids


RARE ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED JIAQING RARE B3700

Time Left: 10h 26m
$80.77 with 5 bids


FINE ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED QIANLONG RARE H6176

Time Left: 10h 17m
$80.70 with 11 bids


STUNNING ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED QIANLONG P3889

Time Left: 10h 21m
$80.70 with 7 bids


Four CHINESE CARVED WOODEN STAND .

Time Left: 1d 2h 53m
$80.26 with 14 bids


Nice Chinese monochrome blue porcelain vase, ca. 1800, Jiaqing period.

Time Left: 1d 9h 47m
$79.00 with 20 bids


A Very Fine Millefleur Chinese Enameled Porcelain Vase W/ Qianlong Mark

Time Left: 2d 10h 52m
$77.00 with 8 bids


FINE ANTIQUE CHINESE MONOCHROME PORCELAIN VASE MARKED YONGZHENG RARE L0380

Time Left: 10h 10m
$75.00 with 3 bids


20th C. Chinese Cloisonné Famille-rose Vase Lamp, MEIPING

Time Left: 1d 36m
$75.00 with 38 bids


A RARE FINE CHINESE 19TH C QING DYNASTY PORCELAIN CELADON CRACKLE GLAZE CENSER

Time Left: 23h 13m
$72.62 with 13 bids


Unusual Antique Qing Dynasty 18th/19thC Chinese Vase Kangxi 6 Character Mark

Time Left: 1d 5h 15m
$71.34 with 5 bids


FINE LARGE ANTIQUE CHINESE FAMILLE ROSE PORCELAIN VASE MARKED KANGXI S8436

Time Left: 9h 59m
$70.00 with 8 bids


RARE ANTIQUE CHINESE PORCELAIN PLAQUE FAMILLE ROSE MARKED MASTER WAN YUNYAN J387

Time Left: 10h 34m
$68.00 with 11 bids


19th Century Chinese Underglaze Blue And Red Snuff Bottle

Time Left: 1d 8h 44m
$67.00 with 11 bids


A PAIR QING DYNASTY BLUE AND WHITE PORCELAIN INTERLOCK BRANCH 囍 VASE

Time Left: 1d 22h 11m
$67.00 with 13 bids


IMPRESSIVE Chinese Qianlong 1736-95 Famille Rose Teapot Antiques Porcelain

Time Left: 7d 22h 48m
$66.25 with 16 bids


Chinese Exquisite Handmade Flowers birds pattern porcelain vase

Time Left: 1d 10h 58m
$66.00 with 3 bids


FINE c1840 CHINESE GOLD LACQUERED IMPERIAL FIGURAL LANDSCAPE SEWING CHEST BOX

Time Left: 9d 12h 4m
$65.00 with 8 bids


Vintage Chinese Bronze Vase, Marked

Time Left: 1d 4h 59m
$63.63 with 1 bids