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17th century sake bottle bought for £5 valued at £500

A 17th century porcelain sake holder bought for £5 in a Japanese junk shop has been valued at £500 on BBC TV show The Antiques Roadshow.

Bought in a junk shop for £5, the sake bottle was valued at £500. Photo c/o BBC

As reported by the Daily Express, the find was revealed by antiques expert Lars Tharp during the episode filmed at Windermere Jetty Museum in the Lake District.

Tharp described it as a “slightly wonky modest little pot dating back to around 1650 with decoration reserved only onto one side.

Lars Tharp discusses the rare find. Photo c/o BBC

“The decoration is done rapidly, you’ve got this lovely stem of a very stylised bamboo, and then these little florets around the shoulder.”

Attracted to its imperfections, the buyer purchased it in a “junk shop” in the south of Japan and currently has it on display in her home.

“It was buried among a lot of tat, but it stuck out, it was just a bit more delicate,” the buyer told Tharp.

As reported by the Daily Express, Tharp went on to explain that the bottle’s original purpose was for storing sake, but said the vessel may be Korean.

“Japanese porcelain – believe it or not this is porcelain – is very grey, it’s very different to Chinese porcelain, but Korean porcelain is also grey,” Tharp said.

As for the value of the item, Tharp said: “I think a Japanese porcelain collector would probably be prepared to pay up to £500. So we can put two noughts on your purchase price.”

Delighted at the discovery, the buyer said she was going to use the vessel as a sake container whenever she cooks Japanese food.

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