Antiques Roadshow guest broke down in tears as the true value of a 19th century dish on display | Television and radio | Show biz & TV
In an old episode of the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow, a guest broke down in tears after expert Ronnie Archer Morgan revealed the value of a 19th century dish. The guest explained that he bought some of the items for just under £ 10, leaving Ronnie blown away.
While visiting Ham House in London, Ronnie began: “These are very beautiful items that you brought me here, they are beautiful examples of things from Melanesia and Polynesia.
“So tell me how you came to be the custodian of these tribal artwork,” to which the guest replied, “When I was 16, a dear friend gave me this.”
He continued, “I was sort of intrigued by this, and the story they told me was that their ancestor was on Captain Cook’s boat that went to Fiji in 1774, I think.
“And that was brought back, but of course I had absolutely no proof of that, this one was at an auction, and I paid £ 4 or something for it.”
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“Then the bowl that I bought it in the 1970s that certainly cost me less than £ 10,” he explained, leaving Ronnie in shock.
Ronnie asked the guest wife what she was thinking, she replied, “I absolutely love them, our house is full of things like this, we are passionate about fighting pieces.”
Ronnie went on to explain, “It’s called a butt, but I don’t think it has anything to do with guns, although that’s what collectors call it today.
“It is made of very heavy wood called ironwood, and it could easily be from or before the time of Captain Cook.
“It’s called a totakia, otherwise known as a pineapple club for obvious reasons, and they were carved out of stone, so we know they’re early, both,” he said. he declared.
“But that’s the piece de resistance for me,” explained Ronnie, pointing to the bowl, which surprised the guest.
“Absolutely, it’s a collector’s dream, you won’t find much of it in the world, this bowl is incredible, an incredible patina, an incredible sculpture.
“This is Melanesia, as you know from the Admiralty Islands, which is about 250 km northeast of Papua New Guinea.
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“It’s definitely the 19th century if not earlier, I mean this, and it could have been reported by Captain Cook,” Ronnie informed the guests.
Ronnie initially valued the clubs between £ 3,500 and £ 4,000, which shocked the guest, to begin with.
Then he moved over to the bowl and said: ‘This I would auction off between £ 20,000 and £ 30,000’ which made the guest cry.
“Oh my God! You’re kidding! It’s amazing I’m shaking,” he said, trying to contain his emotions.
Comforting the guest, Ronnie continued, “It came out there, I was blown away when you got that,” to which he replied, “You really took my breath away.”
“I’m totally lost for words, I really am, I thought it could be between, I don’t know 700 and 1000 or something, but it’s beyond my wildest dreams.”
The couple decided not to put their items up for auction because they had sentimental value and a unique story.
Antiques Roadshow airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on BBC One.