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18th-century porcelain seized by Nazis smashes expectations in auction sale

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A collection of 18th-century porcelains that was seized by the Nazis and stored in a salt mine before being recovered by Allied forces was sold by descendants of the original Jewish owners at auction last week for millions of pounds, far exceeding expectations.

The hoard of 117 items of Dresden porcelain fetched over $13.6 million at the Sotheby’s auction house in New York, the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail newspaper reported on Wednesday. It had been expected to make some $2 million, but nearly every item was sold for more than the asking price.

All are rare Meissen porcelain, dating back to the early 18th century. The collection was first curated in the late 1920s by Franz and Margarethe Oppenheimer, a Jewish couple living in Berlin, according to Sotheby’s.

The proceeds of the sale will benefit the heirs of the family that purchased the collection before the Holocaust, and fled Europe in the late 1930s with few to none of their worldly belongings.

“We cannot comment on [the Oppenheimer family’s] motives, but........

© The Times of Israel

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