The 1,000-year-old rock crystal ewer -one of only seven of its kind known to exist -is the highlight of Christie’s Oct 7 sale of Islamic and Indian art, with an estimated price of at least three million pounds.
But in January Lawrences auction house in southwest England identified it as a 19th-century French claret jug and offered it for sale for 100 to 200 pounds ($175 to $350).
Some collectors sensed it was more special than that. After a bidding war, the jug sold for 220,000 pounds ($385,000), more than 1,000 times the list price.
Christie’s said it has now been identified as “one of the rarest and most desirable works of art from the Islamic world”. MORE