Hidden masterpiece sold for £6k

A MASTERPIECE found hidden beneath another painting was sold at auction yesterday for £6,000.The 19th Century gothic revival work shows Christ at the foot of the cross and had been delicately concealed by a poorer picture of a similar scene.

A MASTERPIECE found hidden beneath another painting was sold at auction yesterday for £6,000.

The 19th Century gothic revival work shows Christ at the foot of the cross and had been delicately concealed by a poorer picture of a similar scene.

It is thought the original work, which is covered with gold leaf, has been hidden from view for more than a century.

Auctioneer Miles Lamdin said: “The painting sold for £6,000 but I cannot say anything more than that about the sale.”

The art mystery began after an eagle-eyed auctioneer from Durrants Auction Rooms in Beccles received the painting, which had been found in a loft following a house clearance.

The auctioneer noticed the top layer peeling off and could glimpse genuine quality beneath it - the top coat was then painstakingly removed to reveal a large, impressive painting of the Lamentation of Christ.

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It is thought the later picture, which included Christian symbols, had always been intended to be removed at a later date - possibly to aid a criminal act.

The painting is oil on canvass and is thought to date from the period between 1830 and 1860.

The most famous name from that era is Augustus Welby Pugin - the architect who designed the Palace of Westminster.