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15th-Century Ming Dynasty Bowl Discovered at Yard Sale

A small bowl bought for just $35 at a yard sale in Connecticut has turned out to be a rare 15th-Century Chinese artefact. The white porcelain bowl was spotted by an unidentified antiques enthusiast near New Haven last year, and they quickly sought an expert evaluation.

The experts came back with good news, revealing that the bowl is thought to be worth between $300,000 and $500,000. In fact, it is believed to be one of only seven such bowls in existence and most of the others are in museums.

Angela McAteer, an expert on Chinese ceramics said, "It was immediately apparent to us that we were looking at something really very, very special. The style of painting, the shape of the bowl, even just the color of the blue is quite characteristic of that early, early 15th-Century … Ming [Dynasty] period.”

How exactly the bowl found itself being sold at a Connecticut outdoor sale remains a mystery. Some have suggested it may have been passed down through generations of the same family.

"It's always quite astounding to think that it still happens, that these treasures can be discovered," McAteer said. "It's always really exciting for us as specialists when something we didn't even know existed here appears seemingly out of nowhere."

Possible Preaching Angle:

God often hides great value behind the veil of the ordinary: 1) Deity of Christ; Humanity of Christ; Messiah - The deity of Christ was cloaked in humanity when he was born in a stable (Isa. 53:2-3; Luke 2:7); 2) Human worth; Insignificance; Small Things - The “ordinary” people in our churches have hidden value (1 Cor. 1:27; Jam. 2:5).

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