Art: $3 1,000 Dust Catcher

For years, the grubby little painting had been collecting dust in the attic of the Hopes of Aberlady, Scotland. It had cost only $50, back in 1834, and no one in the family considered it of any importance. But last summer, Major Archibald Hope decided to send it out for a cleaning. In one corner, restorers discovered the date 1565, the signature of the elder Pieter Bruegel.

Last week, authenticated as Bruegel's Christ and the Woman Taken in Adultery, the little 9 by 13-in. wooden panel brought $31,000 at a London auction.


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