Record-breaking vase was left in a shoebox for decades
The stunning ornament sold for a record-breaking 16.2 million euros (£14.2 million).
The beautiful ornament was auctioned at Sotheby's in Paris, where it sold for 20 times its estimated price, and it is the biggest fee ever commanded by a single item at Sotheby's in France.
Olivier Valmier, Sotheby's Asian arts expert, explained that the seller "took the train, then the metro and walked on foot through the doors of Sotheby's and into my office with the vase in a shoebox protected by newspaper.
"When she put the box on my desk and we opened it, we were all stunned by the beauty of the piece."
He added: "This is a major work of art. It is as if we had just discovered a Caravaggio."
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