Fighting tigers shine bright at Cotswold auction

ARTEFACTS from the Far East attracted international attention when they went under the hammer in Cirencester last month.

With Chinese bidders in the room, on the telephone lines, and bidding via the internet it was little surprise that several carved jade ornaments performed better than expected.

But no-one at Moore Allen & Innocent could have predicted the top price of the day – £2,500 for a tiny carving of two fighting tigers, originally valued at between £80 and £120.

The white jade tigers were mounted on a hardwood base, and measured just 46mm across. They followed the trend set by a Chinese carved jade pendant depicting two phoenix, raised on a hardwood stand, measuring 61mm across, which exceeded a £100 to £150 estimate to sell for £440.

And with interest from the Chinese buyers’ market piqued, more antiques from the Orient achieved good prices: a lacquered and painted Chinese cabinet on stand made £500; a set of four Chinese hardwood and hardstone set framed panels in the Shibayama manner, each depicting a scene of a scholar with student in a landscape setting achieved £320; a Chinese polychrome decorated charger depicting four women fishing by lakeside, a Chinese brown ground and gilt decorated plate, and a Japanese cloisonné dragon decorated vase sold for £320; and £300 was paid for a glazed terracotta cistern with tap hole and incised decoration in the Chinese manner of horses, landscapes and flowers.

Meanwhile, a pair of Japanese Meiji period Satsuma vases decorated with panels of figures in an interior amongst trailing wisteria and flowers achieved £280, while a 19th Century Japanese porcelain scent bottle depicting woman in traditional dress carrying two pails within a landscape and a warrior in costume on horseback sold for £240.

Elsewhere in the sale, a platinum and diamond cluster ring of lozenge form, with one 1.5 carat diamond, two 0.25 carat diamonds and the remaining diamonds approx 0.1 carat made the second highest lot price of the day at £1,850 – slightly over the £1,200 to £1,500 estimate – while £750 was paid for a brass Victorian telescope.

The portable achromatic refractor telescope by had been made for Thomas Cooke of York by a Mr Robertson, a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, and was housed in a mahogany case.

For more information about buying and selling antiques at auction, visit