Ulysses off Connemara by Sean Keating made a record £400,000 at Tennants on March 30.

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The 4ft (1.22m) oil on hardboard, depicting figures off the west coast of Ireland preparing to leave for North America, had been consigned for sale by a south Yorkshire vendor whose family had bought it for £250 when it was exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy in 1952.

Preserved behind a thick coat of nicotine - it promised a very rewarding clean - the emotive scene, estimated at £30,000-50,000, prompted bidding from a dozen telephones and a further six paddles in the room. The Irish buyer, who was in the room, was thought to represent a private client.

The previous record for Sean Keating (1889-1977) was the €170,000 (£114,000) paid for Self Portrait - Man of Aran at James Adam of Dublin in May 2004.