An 18th century Chinese vase, left for decades in a shoebox in France, has sold for 16.2m euros (£14.2m).
The vase formed part of a family inheritance and was recently discovered in an attic.
Sotheby's Asian arts expert, Olivier Valmier, said the seller "took the train, then the metro and walked on foot through the doors of Sotheby's and into my office with the vase in a shoebox protected by newspaper.
"When she put the box on my desk and we opened it, we were all stunned by the beauty of the piece.
"This is a major work of art," Valmier continued. "It is as if we had just discovered a Caravaggio."
The 30 cm, bulb-shaped vase, painted in shades of green, blue, yellow and purple, was described as an exceptionally well-preserved porcelain vessel made for an emperor of the Qing dynasty.
The vase, which was in perfect condition, "is the only known example in the world bearing such detail," said Valmier.
"We didn't like the vase too much, and my grandparents didn't like it either," said the owner of the piece, who only got in touch with Sotheby's in March.
A Sotheby's spokeswoman said: "They knew it had some value but nothing like that, nor that it was from the Qing dynasty."
The auction lasted some 20 minutes, a long time by usual standards, with multiple bidders battling for the vase.
Sotheby's has not revealed the name or nationality of the Asian buyer.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)