Chinese jar found at Shropshire home could make £500,000

18th century Qing dynasty jar The jar is from the Qing dynasty period

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A Chinese jar which stood in a Shropshire house for 30 years could fetch up to £500,000 at auction.

The 18th Century jar, decorated with lotus flowers and bats, was spotted by Jeremy Rye, a fine art art agent who had gone to value a dessert service.

Mr Rye said: "The owners had no idea of its value, and I suspect that they would have parted with it for a few hundred pounds."

The vase will be auctioned at Sotheby's on Wednesday, 9 November.

The auctioneers said they expected the vase to fetch between £300,000 and £500,000

Stephen Loakes from Sotheby's said: "Often jars and their covers become separated over time and it is a rarity to have a complete set."

Mr Rye saw the 18in (45cm) high vase standing on the floor of the private house he was visiting in Shropshire.

He said: "Unfortunately, the owners do not know the exact story of the vase, but their ancestors traded in the Far East and were collectors, so presumably that is how it was acquired."

The vase had spent 30 years stood near a dining room window.

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