Antiques Roadshow expert stuns man with value of bowl he bought for £10

By Neil Shaw

A man who took a £10 bowl to the Antiques Roadshow was left shaking and crying after the expert valuer revealed how much it is really worth.

The stunning moment came during the latest episode of the long-running BBC show on Sunday night, which had been filmed at Ham House in London.

The collecter had taken a gunstock, a tribal club and a wooden bowl to be valued by expert Ronnie Archer-Morgan.

He said the first item had been given to him by a friend who claimed an ancestor who sailed with Captain Cook during a trip to Fiji in 1774 brought it back with him.

The second item was purchased for £4 at auction, and the bowl was bought in the 1970s and cost under £10.

Ronnie said the first item was a gunstock made from ironwood, and he suggested it could easily have been around during the time of Captain Cook and the second was a totokia, known as a pineapple club.

Then he turned his attention to the bowl.

Ronnie said: "This is the piece de resistance to me. Absolutely. This is a collector's dream.

"You'll find few of these around the world. This bowl is amazing. Amazing patina, amazing carving.

"It's obviously utilitarian because it's a bowl, but its zoomorphic form obviously suggests that it's ritualistic or for ceremony.

"This is certainly 19th century, if not earlier."

He said: "To value the clubs, I'll do them together. I would value these to £3,500 to £4,000.

"This I would value at auction at £20,000 to £30,000."

The guest was visibly shocked by the comment, shouting out in surprise: "Oh my God! You are joking! That's incredible. I'm shaking."

He began shaking and crying, unable to believe the staggering amount.

Ronnie confessed he was blown away by the item, with the guest replying: "You really have taken my breath away.

"I'm totally, totally lost for words. I really am. I thought it might be worth between I don't know, £700 and £1,000 or something.

"But that is beyond my wildest dreams."

Antiques Roadshow airs Sundays at 8pm on BBC One.


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