Auctioneers Wilkinsons of Doncaster have announced a most unusual Chinese lot for sale on March 2. The property of a private collector, who has released it for sale after holding the item for ‘more than a decade’, a large antique coin hoard firmly secured within an ancient pot will go under the hammer.
Photographs courtesy Wilkinsons
The hoard of coins are stacked concentrically in a baluster shaped, ring-turned pot, 20cms. in height and, at its widest, 23cm in diameter. The auctioneers estimate that are some 2,500 coins contained within the pot. There are x-ray images available of the pot which indicate that it is carefully stacked full of coins (see picture below).
The owner of the pot says he believes it to be “12th century or earlier” which might place it as being Yuan or Southern Song and the appearance could bear out this estimate of age. The age of the contents is almost certainly much later. However, as all the contents are effectively sealed within the pot, having been deliberately stuck together, it is virtually impossible, without seriously damaging the vessel, to ascertain what is actually there . . . There is clearly a value in the pot itself. The $64,000 question is as to the value of the coinage within, and whether it merits destruction of the pot!
The collection may have been put together in this way by a collector. Here at chineseart.co.uk it seems to us that this hoard may have been prepared in this way, and hidden, during the 1970s, the period of the Cultural Revolution.
The best that can be said is that the pot and its contents represent a most interesting speculation. Wilkinsons estimate the lot at £800-1,600 and online bids in excess of £600 are being registered.