The owner of a Chinese vase initially estimated at €2,000 saw its price soar at auction to more than €9 million, according to French auction house Osenat.
The sale took place in Fontainebleau and the vase was part of a collection of furniture and various works of art.
The seller, who lives in French overseas territory, is a lady who inherited the vase from her mother, who herself inherited it from her mother, a great Parisian collector in the last century.
The object was part of the possessions left by the seller's mother when she died, in her flat in Saint-Briac-sur-Mer, on the Brittany coast. The saleswoman was far away, she did not even see the vase, she had it transported to Paris from on the Brittany coast.
"It's a crazy story," said auctioneer Jean-Pierre Osenat.
Estimated by experts at €1,500 to €2,000, the vase was won with a bid of €7.7 million, giving a price - including costs - of €9.121 million.
The question is from what period it dates. If it is from the 20th century, as the experts concluded, the object is relatively commonplace. If it is from the 18th century, it is an extremely rare piece, justifying the purchase price.