Rare porcelain swan to attract worldwide interest at auction

A rare Lowestoft Porcelain swan, which is set to be auctioned in Norfolk in November. Picture: Keys

A rare Lowestoft Porcelain swan, which is set to be auctioned in Norfolk in November. Picture: Keys Auctioneers and Valuers - Credit: Archant

An extremely rare porcelain swan that was made almost 250 years ago is set to be auctioned off next month.

A rare Lowestoft Porcelain swan, which is set to be auctioned in Norfolk in November. Picture: Keys

A rare Lowestoft Porcelain swan, which is set to be auctioned in Norfolk in November. Picture: Keys Auctioneers and Valuers - Credit: Archant

The rare Lowestoft Porcelain model dates from around 1785, and was one of a very small number made by the Suffolk factory.

It is likely to spark interest from across the world as it goes under the hammer in Norfolk next month.

With the porcelain swan having sold for more than £10,000 when it was last up for auction in 2010, auction experts are predicting it will attract interest from collectors throughout the world.

The Lowestoft porcelain factory was known mostly for functional household pieces such as jugs, teapots and cups.


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Animal figures were not commonly made at the Crown Street factory, which operated from 1757 until 1802.

It was also very rare for Lowestoft animal figures to be painted, and the swan which will be auctioned by Keys Auctioneers and valuers in Aylsham as part of their two day Fine Sale on November 25-26 features sepia enamel feathers and painted eyes and beak.

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The piece has come from a local collection, and was once part of the renowned John Warrell collection.

It has been auctioned twice before – in 1986 when it sold for £820, and in 2010 when it sold for £10,500.

The Lowestoft Porcelain brand holds an important position in the history of British ceramics as no other factory produced so many dated and inscribed pieces.

David Broom, ceramics expert at Keys Auctioneers and Valuers, said: “Keys has built a national and international reputation for Lowestoft porcelain, and the rarest pieces are often brought to us for sale.

“There is actually a fair amount of standard Lowestoft porcelain which comes to market, but it is the rare pieces such as this swan which really catch the attention of serious collectors.”

The swan is one of a number of rare Lowestoft porcelain items in Keys’ November Fine Sale.

Keys’ two day Fine Sale takes place online via KeysLive at bid.keysauctions.co.uk on November 25-26.

The full catalogue will be available online at www.keysauctions.co.uk in early November.

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