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Measuring 5in (12cm) wide, it includes V-shaped iron-red and blue enamel panels of birds in pomegranate branches and is set to the base with ten faceted hardstone cabochons.

In addition to both Fabergé's imperial warrant and a 91 standard mark, it comes in its original silk-lined sycamore box.

The piece came from a Leicestershire client and was conservatively estimated at £2000-3000 on October 16.

Two strong commission bids and five international telephone bidders competed before the box sold to London specialists Wartski.

The buyer's premium was 20%.