Antiques Roadshow guest stupefied by eye-watering value of old incense burner

Antiques Roadshow got tense when an incense burner was brought in for valuation during the BBC show's visit to Compton Verney in Warwickshire.

The guest who brought in the antique from China she said had been in her family "forever" although she had no idea of its actual worth.

Expert Lars Tharp questioned the guest about the rare find on the show on Sunday night (March 21) and came to a mind-boggling sum when he valued it.

"The stand is very Chinese, you’ve got these dragons coming out of clouds," he says.

"There is a clue for what it is used for and I hope that you might be tempted to what it is intended to do, which is to fill it with sand and then go down to our local hippy store and get joss sticks."

Lars told the guest the incense burner was used in a Buddhist temple.

Discussing the detail on the burner, Lars said: "It’s a beautiful piece and underneath you’ve got what often you see on Chinese bronzes like this.

"You’ve got a Ming-style mark. The Ming dynasty finishes in the 1640s and that particular mark would like us to believe that this was made in the 15th, 16th century."

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Lars reckoned the item was actually from the 17th century and then went on to reveal what it might be worth today.

"If I came to your door and offered you £1,000 would you be pleasantly surprised?" he asked the guest.

She said she would refuse to sell it for that much.

He continued: "If I came to your door and offered you between £10,000 and £15,000?"

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The guest insisted she still wouldn't sell it, but said she would be "surprised".

Lars then revealed the incense burner really was worth between £10,000 and £15,000.

The guest looks at him in disbelief and exclaims: "No! This is the thing that has been knocked around the family forever."

Antiques Roadshow is available to watch on the BBC iPlayer.

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