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Chinese incense burner. Doesn't look very old, but I am no authority.
I though a censer also but no holes on the base to draw air through. Went for $80 in minutes.
Incense was stick type. Your censer held sand. Sticks were pushed into sand upright. Lid off. Sometimes ropes were attached to the handles and censer could then be swung back and forth or side to side.
Michael is the go-to guy regarding Asian items. I would have thought it would go for a higher price, but like you I too have very little knowledge of the subject. Keep this site handy. www.gotheborg.com for looking up marks, eras, dynasties. Great site.
Mondo, thanks. I made my $ so am just curious what the real value was. I always ask after I sell to a dealer what the value is for educational purposes. Sold a French chandelier for 3800 and he said he had a buyer at 8k. Take a margin and move on to the next piece is my mantra.
It looks to me like a 19th century, Cloisonne censer from China. Tom is quite right in that these often held sand inside to help stabilise the incense sticks and were often used, both with and without the lids. The sticks merely placed through the holes int he lid, versus leave the lid off for ceremonies with many more people.
I've seen these items sell in a wide price range of US$400 to US$5000. I realise that price range seems a little vague, but there are various factors which come into play. For instance, your piece has no maker mark in the bottom centre underneath which is 'typically' where the mark is placed, though admittedly not always. Therefore, dating the piece comes down to the design, materials and quality of the product made. Further scientific testing can sometimes be underaken to analyse the substances used in the decoration and metals themselves, such tests are usually reserved for pieces which could lend themselves to extreme value if authenticated.
Without seeing the piece in person, I could never say for certain, but I'd say if someone bought it for $80, it is possible they got a bargain. Even pieces like your, without a lid, sell for more.
Here's a piece with a similar shape, it too is a 19th century piece.
Here is the far end type piece Michael was referring to. This one did not even have a lid!
Well, then a new expensive one to add to the upper end of the range I've seen these sell for.
Not to say that the prices 'realised' by the sellers has always been the best price possible, just that they've simply sold them for too little, or they were either of such poor quality, or non-authentic, that they weren't worth more.
gadzooks. Look at the sides of the handles on mine. I see machining from a polishing wheel not that means modern but perhaps?
They may not be machine polishing marks, as hand worked materials can leave similar marks if the person doing the work is methodical, precise and consistent in their movements of the work they do.
Thanks but I fulfilled the order and it's off. More power to them if it's a winner...! I told them to insure it for 750.
True but it's good to keep these things in mind for other items you may come across.