Mythical Lions Roar at Mallams' 24 & 25 November Asian & Islamic Art Sale


Mallams’ two day Asian & Islamic Art Sale took place this week at the Cheltenham saleroom and achieved total sales of just over £207,000 (exc. BP).

Day one focused on Chinese art and a Tang style jade pebble with greyish green and russet markings (lot 255) was much admired and soared well above its top estimate of £1000. Carved as a mythical, reclining lion-like beast and dating from the late Ming dynasty, it saw a number of interested parties fighting to secure the lot, eventually selling to a UK telephone bidder for £11500.

Another Chinese mythical lion, this time carved from marble (lot 407), also proved popular. Dating from the Tang dynasty, it depicted a crouched animal with its front paws resting on a rock, and sold to a UK Mallams Live bidder for £4400, almost 50% above its top £3000 estimate.

Also sparking interest was a Chinese hardwood altar table (lot 396), in the Ming style with fluted supports. It quickly passed its conservative £300-£400 estimate with the hammer falling at £9400, the winning bid from an overseas bidder.

Mallams had several examples of famille verte porcelain, renowned for its unique iridescence, in day one of the sale. Lot 63 was a 19th century Chinese famille verte octagonal vase featuring panels of exotic birds resting on flowering branches and a blue four-character Qianlong mark. Standing at 45cm high it was estimated at £400-£700 but was highly contested, eventually going to an overseas Mallams Live bidder for £3600.

A much older example of this type of porcelain, dating from the Kangxi dynasty (1662-1722) was also featured in the sale. This famille verte dish, painted with courtly ladies and a cat chasing a mouse (lot 373) provoked a bidding battle between online and phone bidders with an overseas telephone bidder claiming victory with a winning bid of £3400, almost three times top estimate.

Day two of the sale featured Japanese, Islamic and Asian Art and the top performing lot was a 17th century, Korean, Tang style gilt bronze figure of Buddha (lot 770), estimated at £400-£700. Coming to Mallams from a private English collection, it was a European bidder who placed the top bid of £5000 via

Mallams is now accepting entries for its next Asian & Islamic Art Sale on 27 April 2022. If you would like an informal valuation please contact Robin Fisher at or William Fisher at

All prices are subject to a 30% buyers' premium (VAT inclusive). 

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