Pewsey auction of rare jewelled flask sparks interest around the world (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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Pewsey auction of rare jewelled flask sparks interest around the world
Would-be buyers of a rare Victorian jewel-decorated flask found by Pewsey Jubilee Auction Rooms in a routine house clearance at Etchilhampton is expected to sell for more than £18,000 when it goes under the hammer on Wednesday.
There has been so much interest from all over the world in the seven and a half inch tall flask that the original estimate of the vase selling for between £8-12,000 has been upped to at least £18,000, said Sue Owen, who runs the auction room with David Harrison and who will be wielding the gavel at Wednesday’s sale.
The flask was designed by top London architect William Burgess and curiously engraved in medieval script: “W Burges in remembrance of Tommy Deane his pupil MDCCCLXXIV”.
Tommy Deane, who went on to become the architect Sir Thomas Manley Deane, was alive and well and making a name for himself internationally when Burgess designed the flask and commissioned it to be made to remind him of his apprentice who had exceeded himself after completing his indentures in 1875.
David Harrison said they had no idea how the flask -- whose original design is held by the Victoria and Albert Museum -- came to be in the house at Etchilhampton.
The turquoise glazed flask is decorated with wire work and has a detachable cloisonne dome top encrusted with cut and cabochon semi-precious stones.
Interest in Burges’s designs was revived a year ago after one of the Antiques Road Show experts Geoffrey Munn said he would be a delighted to see a piece of jewellery designed by the 19th century architect and in response a woman took a piece along to a subsequent show that was valued at £36,000.
Mrs Owen said: "We believe Burges designed it himself and had it made for himself to remind him of his pupil who later became Sir Thomas Manly Deane.”
It’s probable that an earlier Chinese white-metal vase was used as a base for the Burges creation that was made by an unknown jeweller-silversmith of the day.
To find out more about the flask and the auction e mail the auctioneers: email@example.com.
There are about 500 lots in the auction and the flask is expected to go under the hammer at about 1.30pm