Forgotten Treasures: War Hero’s Chinese Artifacts Sell for Nearly £1 Million

In a outstanding discovery, the household of Major Edward Coplestone Radcliffe, a warfare veteran turned antiques supplier, has offered his extraordinary assortment of Chinese artefacts for practically £1 million.

These relics, together with pots, vases, bowls, and statues, had been saved in an attic cupboard, untouched for over 50 years.

This paraphrased article explores the story behind Major Radcliffe’s assortment and highlights among the outstanding objects that have been auctioned off.

The Legacy of Major Edward Coplestone Radcliffe:

Major Edward Coplestone Radcliffe, who served valiantly in each the First and Second World Wars, established an antiques enterprise after his experiences within the trenches.

However, the outbreak of the Second World War interrupted his endeavors as he joined the troops evacuated from Dunkirk in 1940.

Throughout his life, Major Radcliffe diligently collected a formidable assortment of Chinese artefacts, preserving them within the household’s dusty attic for a long time.

The Astonishing Finds:

Among the hidden treasures throughout the assortment was a ‘lost’ Ming dynasty cloisonné field and canopy, which commanded an astonishing sale value of £288,000.

Major Radcliffe had acquired this ‘pomegranate’ field for a mere £19 (£1,000 in in the present day’s foreign money) in 1946, unaware of its true historic significance.

Experts initially mistook it for a Seventeenth-century duplicate, however later confirmed it to be certainly one of solely 5 unique items crafted for Xuande, the fifth emperor of the Ming Dynasty.

Rare Chinese Relics:

The public sale showcased different outstanding objects from Major Radcliffe’s assortment.

A translucent jadeite dish from the Qing Dynasty, bought by Radcliffe in 1945 for £28, fetched a formidable £53,480.

Additionally, a celadon ribbed vase from the Song Dynasty, acquired for £42 in 1946, offered for £34,000.

Notably, a small ‘Yaozhou’ celadon ‘fish’ conical bowl from the identical period realized £24,000, and a Song Dynasty ‘Junyao’ dish commanded £22,000.

Unexpected Journey to Auction Success:

The discovery of Major Radcliffe’s assortment, hidden away in a dust-filled attic cupboard, was met with astonishment.

Dreweatts Auctioneers of Newbury, Berkshire, oversaw the sale and expressed their delight with the outcomes.

The Chinese cloisonné “pomegranate” field, specifically, garnered vital consideration and fierce bidding from world wide.

The remaining hammer value of £230,000, rising to £288,000 with charges, demonstrated the enduring market energy and purchaser confidence in such uncommon and invaluable items.


Major Edward Coplestone Radcliffe’s outstanding assortment of Chinese relics, painstakingly amassed over a number of a long time, has lastly come to mild and introduced immense pleasure to his household.

The sale of those artifacts, which had been hidden away within the household’s attic for 50 years, achieved practically £1 million.

This serves as a testomony to the enduring attract of Chinese antiquities and the significance of preserving historic treasures for future generations to understand and cherish.

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