Collectables

The term ‘collectables’ (or collectibles) encompasses a vast range of items in fields as diverse as arms, armour and militaria, bank notes, cameras, coins, entertainment and sporting memorabilia, stamps, taxidermy, wines and writing equipment.

Some collectables are antiques, others are classed as retro, vintage or curios but all are of value to the collector. In any of these fields, buyers seek out rarities and items with specific associations.

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Where reliable trains just get better…

07 July 2004

THE railways themselves may not be as dependable as they were, but you can absolutely count on Sheffield Railwayana Auctions coming up with the goods. June 12 saw the specialists, who still don’t charge buyer’s premium, steaming along to a £438,000 total from 530 lots.

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When flying glass was a big hit

07 July 2004

BEFORE the acceptance of the clay pigeon (patented in 1880) as the most suitable target for skeet shooting, there was glass ball shooting. Thought to originate in Britain in the 1830s, but quickly spreading to the United States, shooting at uniform spherical glass target balls was a recognised Victorian pastime that gathered momentum following the invention in 1877 of a trap capable of casting a missile through the air in a long arc.

The Fiery Darts of Satan

07 July 2004

BOUND in contemporary vellum, a 1681 first of Tel Ignea Satanae... [The Fiery Darts of Satan] by Johann Christoph Wagenseil was sold for £1000 (Powell) in an Y Gelli sale of June 11.

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Ronson Bartender serves up £1350

07 July 2004

PROBABLY the best-known and the most coveted of the novelty table lighters made by the Ronson Lighter Co. is the 1936 patent Touch-Tip Bartender.

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Toys reflect attitudes over 20th century – and sell well in 21st

07 July 2004

TOYS from before the First World War up to the 1970s met with an enthusiastic reception at Wallis & Wallis' (15% buyer's premium) specialist sale on June 14, few more so than a c.1912 Lehmann tinplate toy which raised something of an ethical question.

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Preview

07 July 2004

PICTURED right is a 2ft 1in (64cm) Jacobean amputation saw made by Robert Hobbs that is appearing at a sale at the Cedars Hotel in Stowmarket, Suffolk on July 30.

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Griffin becomes the guardian of the bargain

07 July 2004

ANY sale overseen by Alain Weil has the potential to be interesting. His sale at the Hôtel Bergère, Paris, on June 18 was no exception. The items on offer in this 455-lot sale ranged from classical times to the distinctive medals of the Art Deco.

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Biggles takes off but gets a bumpy ride

07 July 2004

BIGGLES had a big day planned at Dominic Winter’s Swindon salerooms on June 24, with just over 100 lots on offer, mostly from one collection.

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Charging over estimate in Paris

07 July 2004

THE Paris firm of Bourgey was founded in Paris in 1895. Now under the direction of the granddaughter of the founder, Sabine Bourgey, it is still going strong if the recent sale on June 3 is anything to go by.

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Lottery fund waved at rare Sickert fan

06 July 2004

THE Fan Museum in Greenwich, the world’s only museum entirely dedicated to the history of fans and the craft of fan-making, have acquired an important fan painted around 1889 by Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942).

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18th century war games

06 July 2004

AN auctioneer contemplating an old boxed set of wooden soldiers complete with faded instructions for war games could be forgiven for steering it towards the toy section, or even a specialist toy sale.

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Preview

29 June 2004

ON July 15, Bonhams will present a double-catalogue sale of 500 lots of natural history books and watercolours from a single collection and one of the highlights will be a very special copy of Audebert & Viellot’s Oiseaux dorés ou a reflets metalliques... of 1800-02.

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Snow on Anaesthetics

29 June 2004

JOHN Snow’s best-known work, On the Mode of Communication of Cholera, deals with his investigations into the London cholera epidemic of 1831-32.

Lillie Langtry’s lost lovers

29 June 2004

A FOUR-page, colour illustrated feature in the April 25 issue of The Sunday Times Magazine will have done nothing to harm the saleroom prospects of a collection of 13 love letters written in the period January 1881-June 1882 by the actress Lillie Langtry, “the adored pin-up whose affairs rocked Victorian Britain”, and on May 13 Cumbrian auctioneers Mitchells of Cockermouth sold the lot for £5000.

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Dandy has a No.1 outing

29 June 2004

EARLIER this year, when Comic Book Postal Auctions sold a copy of Beano No.1 for a record £11,000, I briefly looked into the reasons why Dandy, which preceded Beano by several months, is not quite so avidly pursued and looked forward to seeing just how much the next Dandy No. 1 to come to auction might make.

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Holmes and the Sussex Vampire

29 June 2004

AS a follow-up to last week’s report on the Conan Doyle collection sold at King Street in May, I bring belated news of The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire.

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A true treat for Custer buffs...

22 June 2004

AN autograph sale held by Swanns on April 29 included 11 lots from the George Armstrong Custer collection formed by the late Dr. Elizabeth Atwood, a vet and well-known Custer buff. Seen right is a copy print of a larger image by Timothy O’Sullivan, inscribed “Truly yours G.A. Custer”, which sold for $14,000 (£7955).

Georgia on my mind at Baldwin’s

22 June 2004

THERE was scarcely a facet of numismatic endeavour which was not represented in Baldwin’s (15% buyer’s premium) sale of May 4 and 5 (2018 lots).

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The up-to-date appeal of fossils

22 June 2004

FOSSILS, whose decorative qualities in either antique or contemporary settings, have made them a regular feature of Sotheby’s garden sales at Billingshurst, opened the May event with 100 lots. Although dealers have become interested in the genre (there are, for example, now stands selling natural history at Olympia), private buyers took the top offerings including the best seller, a detail of which is shown right.

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Monzani flute plays £2200

22 June 2004

HIGHLIGHT of the Collectors’ Sale conducted by Keys (10% buyer’s premium) in Aylsham was this silver-mounted ivory flute by Monzani.

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