Pottery sampling

If you would like your pottery item tested, get in touch with us via our contact form. We will need to know where the piece is located so we can recommend the closest sampling agent to you, or arrange to come and sample it ourselves. We will also need to know what type of piece it is, for example a Pre-Columbian pottery figure or a Chinese porcelain vase.


All sampling is carried out in a darkened room by an accredited agent.

We need a 100mg sample of powder from an inconspicuous area of your object. This leaves a hole the size of the tip of a pencil lead. It is usually necessary to take more than one sample to check that there are no restored areas and that different parts of the piece are made from the same clay.

An image of the piece must be submitted with the sample.  This may be an actual photo, or on a CD or emailed to us by the agent.

Details are entered onto a data card which is sent along with any photographs and the sample(s) to our laboratory for testing.

Learn more about how the TL testing process works.

Our report

After we have tested your piece, we will issue you with a one-page report. Samples are normally processed within three weeks and once payment is received, preliminary results are emailed or faxed. Original reports will then be posted to you.


Sampling is free if you are in the UK but a travel charge applies outside central London. If you are outside the UK, there will be a separate sampling fee, which you should pay directly to our representative. Testing costs are separate and payable to Oxford Authentication Ltd.

£180 + VAT at current rate
With VAT (TVA) number Without VAT number
€290 + VAT at current rate
Hong Kong    
Regular delivery 5-day express 10-day express
HK$4200 HK$8400 HK$6300
Please note that the Hong Kong prices include the representative’s sampling fee.


STANDARD: Normally ready in 3 weeks.

10 Day EXPRESS: 10 working days from receipt by Oxford Authentication Ltd

5 Day EXPRESS: 5 working days from receipt by Oxford Authentication Ltd

Travel expenses

Central London: Free of charge.

Outside the UK: Please contact us for travel costs. Minimum group size: 25 pieces or more.

On site sampling

You can bring your object to our laboratory for sampling while you wait by appointment only, sampling takes 30 mins, results will be in ready in 3 weeks as standard.

You can send items to us, but please call to discuss first.

NB. We cannot accept delivery/deliveries that have not been pre-arranged.

Oxford Authentication - Sancai glazed Tang Horse, Courtesy of Castle Antiquities - Hong Kong photo

Sancai glazed Tang Horse, Courtesy of Castle Antiquities - Hong Kong

Helen Mason of Oxford Authentication drilling photo

Helen Mason of Oxford Authentication drilling

Authenticity testing