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World’s Costliest Vases

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The Costliest Vases in the World

China is the site of the discovery of some of the most ancient specimens of pottery in the world, few of which date back to 9000 BC. The ceramic products that have been unearthed in the region can be traced back to the reigns under which they were formed. In fact, the earliest example of porcelain is said to have been formed during the time of the rule of the Ha dynasty, from 202 BC to 220 AD. Since the history of China is rife with breathtaking ceramic artistry, it should not come as a surprise that the priciest vases in the whole world are distinctly Chinese.

Qianlong Vase

The successor to the famous Ming dynasty of China, the Qing dynasty took control of the empire until the year 1911. The Qianlong Emperor turned out to attain the position of the fifth emperor of the Qing dynasty in the year 1736. During his glorious reign, Tang Ying, his royal supervisor created a memoir with illustrations, which came to be known as “Twenty Illustrations of the Manufacture of Porcelain”.

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A mother and son duo came into possession of the 18th century Qianlong porcelain vase through the medium of inheritance. According to reports, the two of them have gone into hiding at the time due to the amount of £12 million in terms of taxes which they will be expected to shell out following the vase, which is going to sell for an estimated sum of £1.2 million, was able to rack up an astounding £53 million (more than US $80 million) in an auction. The buyer of the Qianlong vase happened to be an influential industrialist in China who is also a collector of ancient artifacts.

Ming Dynasty

China was under the rule of the Ming dynasty from 1368 AD to 1644 AD. The phase in the history of China witnessed the formation of a stunning quantity of carved lacquer wares, embroidered silks, glazed porcelain items as well as works of art which came in a variety of materials. The Empire of the mighty Ming was interested in art and produced large numbers of forgeries which were designed with the purpose of cheating unsuspecting purchasers out of their wealth. This happened to be a common problem. In fact, the trouble became so widespread that guides had to be printed in order to assist in the detection of such type of forgery. The authentic vase is a desired item from the annals of history.

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Dating back to the period of Hongwu who was the founder of the Ming era, the costly vase was purchased at an auction in recent times by Steve Wynn, the casino owner in Las Vegas who also happens to be famous for his insatiable appetite for the collection of art. He has often come under criticism from the art community who blame him for paying large rates for pieces which are definitely second-rate. However, this latest acquisition is most definitely an exception to the rule.

This exquisite vase dating back to the 14th century is adorned in scrolling flowers, copper red in colour. The condition of the vase is excellent, being well preserved due to its rarity.

Mr. Wynn happened to become the owner of the priceless vase at the Imperial Sales held by Christie’s in Hong Kong for a sum of 78,520,000 Hong Kong dollars. Instead of hoarding it in his private collection, Mr. Wynn has been kind enough to return the vase to its country of origin by making a donation to a museum in Macau. The vase can now be viewed and admired by the eyes of the public.

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