Wednesday - 03 September 2014

Museum and family home pieces draw buyers North of Border

31 January 2005Written by ATG Reporter

Thomson Roddick & Medcalf. Buyer’s premium: 15 per centTWO large private consignments accounted for half the lots at Thomson Roddick & Medcalf’s Edinburgh sale and had the predictable effect of pulling in bidders from south of the Border.

The smaller, 30-lot consignment comprised furniture and gothic revival artefacts being sold by the Jane Welsh Carlyle Museum in Haddington, East Lothian to fund refurbishment during its current closure.

The period furniture did not come with a Carlyle provenance. Although Haddington-born Jane Welsh was the wife of Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881), this material had been bought at the time of the museum's opening in 1981.

The second contribution comprised 160 lots from Burnhead, ancestral home of the Scott-Watson family at Hawick and much of the furniture was in untouched 'country house' condition.

The auctioneers plan to disperse the 40 pictures from Burnhead on March 22.

The December sale's star came from Burnhead - an 1830, London-made mantel regulator by Molyneux & Sons.

The market for such pieces of technical interest remains as strong as ever and a dealer from the South of England pursued this gem, in untouched condition, to £7000.

Also of note from Hawick was the elegantly proportioned nest of four Regency quartetto tables made from an unusual mixture of yew, burr yew and fruitwood. Of lovely quality, the tables tripled expectations when they went at £4200 to a Scottish dealer.

Best entry from the museum also went to the Scottish trade - a pair of Regency card tables which sold at £4600.

From other private sources came two entries attributed to the Edinburgh cabinetmaker William Trotter whose plain style furniture commands a loyal private following and, increasingly, a wider international interest.

A dealer from the English Midlands, confident that a Regency, gilt-and-cream decorated armchair attributed to Trotter was the real thing bid £1600 for ownership.

A Regency mahogany breakfast table catalogued as in the style of William Trotter was knocked down to a Scottish furniture dealer at £1500.

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ATG Reporter

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