Rare plate is on the table

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A RARE and previously unrecorded plate by Maiolica artist Francesco Xanto Avelli has been uncovered by Lyon & Turnbull auctioneers.

The plate, dated 1537, was discovered on a regular house valuation and is expected to realise more than £100,000 at auction at Lyon & Turnbull in Edinburgh next Wednesday.

The plate is thought to have been purchased by the vendor’s family in Italy between 1894 and 1916.

Celia Curnow, ceramics consultant to Lyon & Turnbull, said: “I have waited more than 30 years to see a piece of this quality outside a museum.

“In his 2007 exhibition devoted to Xanto, curator John Mallett, former keeper of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, described Xanto as ‘Pottery-painter, poet, man of the Italian Renaissance’.”