Tibetan expedition items sold for $216,500 at Henry Aldridge

A collection of Tibetan treasures from a British expedition has sold with outstanding results, having been valued on BBC TV show "Flog It!"

Tibetan Flog It auction
Younghusband's expedition was essentially a minor invasion, leading to the massacre of thousands of Tibetans


The collection was originally thought to be worth very little, but when it appeared in Henry Aldridge & Son's sale on August 10, it soared to £140,000 ($216,500).

It contained a silver teapot, which sold for £2,250, two rare Buddhist statues, which made £45,000 and £75,000, and rare photographs from the infamous British expedition of 1903-1904 led by Colonel Francis Younghusband, which saw thousands of Tibetans massacred by British forces.

"Anything to do with the Younghusband expedition to Tibet is incredibly collectable and the level of quality and craftsmanship and casting in deity figurine was sublime," said auctioneer Andrew Aldridge to the Daily Mail newspaper.

"The Flog It team filmed the auction and I think captured the owner in a surprised but delighted state afterwards."

With the prominence of Chinese collectors on the current market, Buddhist items have become extremely popular. In July, a six-foot statue of the bodhisattva Guanyin sold for $231,372.

Sotheby's will hold a selling exhibition dedicated to Buddhist art in September.

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