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Each piece was decorated in colours with scenes of Aesop’s Fables painted by Jefferyes Hammett O’Neale. The part-set was consigned from a house clearance in Dorchester, with almost all the pieces going to a leading member of the London trade in the room against lively bidding from the room and seven or eight phones.

Top price was the £18,000 paid for a damaged teapot and cover, with a haircrack to the rim and a reglued handle. But perhaps the best performance came from this cream jug, of oval vertically ribbed shape, painted with the fable of the Fox and the Ape. At 33/4in (9.5cm) high, and with a firing hair crack to the base, it made £16,000 plus 15 per cent premium.