Carpet from Beijing's Forbidden City to be auctioned

This carpet used to be placed under the Chinese Emperor's throne

at the Imperial Palace in Beijing's Forbidden City

Location: Paris, France

Now, it's going under the hammer at Christie's Paris

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRISTIE'S LONDON'S EXPERT IN ORIENTAL CARPETS, LOUISE BROADHURST, SAYING:"So this is an incredible, magnificent, imperial 16th century Ming dragon throne carpet. And that basically means that this was woven in the 16th century for the emperors in the Forbidden City. There was an imperial workshop that created these carpets solely for the interiors of the halls within the Forbidden City. This particular carpet, due to its shape and its decoration, was woven specifically for the emperor's throne. And this was a square format raised above the floor level on which the emperor's throne would have been placed."

It's estimated to fetch up to $5 million

"This is absolutely a masterpiece. We have many collectors and institutions, private individuals who are looking really for works of art that have very strong provenance, historically important and magnificently beautiful. This has all of those. It is an extremely rare work of art to come to the market. It hasn't been seen, as I say, for 34 years. So this is a rare opportunity."

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