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See the hidden gems which made this independent auction house £440,000

PUBLISHED: 11:30 29 October 2020

A rare 17th Century model of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem, in olivewood, intricately inlaid with mother-of-pearl, bone and ebony with rosettes, lozenges and stellar motifs, with removable sections which fetched £27,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

A rare 17th Century model of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem, in olivewood, intricately inlaid with mother-of-pearl, bone and ebony with rosettes, lozenges and stellar motifs, with removable sections which fetched £27,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

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An independent auction house based in Suffolk has made nearly half a million pounds in 2020 at a number of specialist sales with one hidden gem picking up more than £27,000.

A Peking glass vase, with scrolling leaf design and seven character marks to the base which made £15,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLERA Peking glass vase, with scrolling leaf design and seven character marks to the base which made £15,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

Bishop & Miller auctions have been based in Stowmarket for six years and despite having a shorter history than other similar companies in Suffolk, the business has seen a huge rise in international interest over the past year.

This summer, they held two specialist auctions featuring a total of 440 lots.

The first of the sales was a Asian Art auction which boasted a host of fine glassware, models and Chinese artefacts.

The biggest surprise was a Chinese Peking glass pot with three ribbed bands and a scrolling foliate body which also featured seven character marks to the base.

A late Elizabethan/James I oak & inlaid canted cupboard, English, Sussex, circa 1600 – 1610 which fetched £15,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLERA late Elizabethan/James I oak & inlaid canted cupboard, English, Sussex, circa 1600 – 1610 which fetched £15,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

It was estimated at a modest £100-£150 but eventually went under the hammer for £27,600.

Another Peking glass vase, with scrolling leaf design and seven character marks to the base also smashed its £80-£120 estimate, eventually selling for £15,000.

A number of other fine items sold well with a Chinese gilt lacquered wood figure of Buddha, Qing dynasty selling for £12,600 and a Chinese porcelain pot and cover in turquoise and pink enamel with dragons to the panels and six character marks to the base, sold for £1,700.

A Chinese double gourd vase in blue and white with figures seated playing games with further figures bringing a vase and wood also took a hammer price of £4,800.

A Chinese Peking glass pot with three ribbed bands and a scrolling foliate body which also had seven character marks to the base which fetched £27,600 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLERA Chinese Peking glass pot with three ribbed bands and a scrolling foliate body which also had seven character marks to the base which fetched £27,600 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

Oliver Miller, managing director of Bishop & Miller, said: “We knew it was going to be our best Asian Art auction of the year so far, just by the sheer level of interest we were receiving in the lead up to the auction day itself.

“We had an inkling that a couple of lots were going to go way above and beyond our estimates as we had a number of phone lines on them and I have never seen the office have such a high pile of condition reports for extra detailed images.”

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The second auction to boost Bishop & Miller’s takings featured fine and early works of art and furniture where a Late Elizabethan/James I oak & inlaid canted cupboard fetched £15,000.

A fine 16th Century walnut Spanish table, circa 1580 which fetched £6,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLERA fine 16th Century walnut Spanish table, circa 1580 which fetched £6,000 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER

However the real star lot of the auction was the last lot of the day, a rare 17th Century model of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem, in olivewood, intricately inlaid with mother-of-pearl, bone and ebony with rosettes, lozenges and stellar motifs.

The stunning piece saw fierce bidding between six phonelines and bidders also involved online.

A winning bid of £26,000 was enough to snap up the lot.

Bishop & Miller have a number of specialist auctions in the diary for the rest of 2020 and into 2021. They expect a range of international buyers from the UK, USA and beyond.

A fine mid 17th Century needlework with the discovery of Moses in the bulrushes, with figures representing the pharaohs above, a crocodile representing the Nile in the foreground, with mica windows and seed pearl necklaces which fetched £6,480 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLERA fine mid 17th Century needlework with the discovery of Moses in the bulrushes, with figures representing the pharaohs above, a crocodile representing the Nile in the foreground, with mica windows and seed pearl necklaces which fetched £6,480 at auction. Picture: BISHOP & MILLER


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