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.

Why a IR£650 le Brocquy work was a snip at IR£66,000

26 March 2001

EIRE: BACK in May last year works by Dublin-born Louis le Brocquy (b.1916) entered the same price bracket as that of his compatriots like Yeats and Lavery when Sotheby’s took a record £1,050,000 (plus buyer’s premium) in London for his work entitled Travelling woman with newspaper.

Thucydides and a King James Bible

26 March 2001

A superb example of “the quintessential Italian Renaissance book”, a 1545 first of the first Italian translation of Thucydides in a fine Apollo & Pegasus binding made for the famous library of G.B. Grimaldi – a collection of some 200 key works formed under the supervision of the Roman humanist Tolomei. It sold for $140,000 (£96,550).

Hevelius’ Selenographia...

26 March 2001

Sold at $75,000 (£51,725), at the Freilich sale which took place at Sotheby’s New York on January 10 and 11, was a superb copy of the first complete lunar atlas, Hevelius’ Selenographia... of 1647.

Histoire naturelle ... Règne Minéral

26 March 2001

One of eight colour printed and hand-finished plates from the only known copy of a work that Fabien Gautier D’Agoty issued in 1777, apparently as a prospectus for his Histoire naturelle ... Règne Minéral.

Probier Buchlein... and Bergwerk...

26 March 2001

The former Honeyman copy of the Probier Buchlein... and Bergwerk..., two rare booklets on assaying dated 1524 and ’33 (the latter with two leaves in photocopy) produced one of the shock results of Haskell F. Norman sale in 1998 when it made $80,000 – 20 times the estimate.

Hortus sanitatis and the Atlas minéralogique de la France...

26 March 2001

A spread from a 1491 first edition of the most comprehensive and richly illustrated medical or natural history publication of the 15th century, the Hortus sanitatis.

Systême des animaux... and Campi Phlegraei...

26 March 2001

Interleaved throughout with blank leaves, 19 of which bear the author’s annotations, this is Jean Baptiste Lamarck’s own copy of his landmark work on the evolution of species, an 1801 first of Systême des animaux sans vertèbres, ou tableau général des classes, des ordres et des genre de ces animaux in a contemporary binding.

Booming burgundy!

26 March 2001

BACK IN the mid-1990s, when Far Eastern buyers were sending prices through the roof and people were (supposedly) stocking up for their Millennium parties, fine wine was one of the most excitingly volatile of all auction markets.

English-Speaking Peoples on the African Game Trails

26 March 2001

US: JUST as it was with the Morris bird books featured in last week’s Antiquarian Books pages (see issue no. 1481), we are looking here at a very familiar set of books in an unfamiliar context.

£650 gains entrance to exclusive gun club

26 March 2001

UK: BOXLOCK shotguns are the most common of British fowling firearms and those with bolt-actions are certainly not unusual, but this particular model, left, aroused great interest at Weller and Dufty’s (15 per cent premium) arms and armour auction in Birmingham on March 14.

Euclid’s Elementa

26 March 2001

In a beautifully preserved contemporary, and possibly Austrian binding of blind-stamped calf with brass fittings, this copy of Erhard Ratdolt’s 1482, first printing of Euclid’s Elementa, shows some slight waterstaining to the lower margins, but it remains one of the largest and freshest copies in existence – taller than even the Doheny, Honeyman-Garden and Haskell F. Norman copies.

Seventeenth century diversions on a dextrous and mysterious art

26 March 2001

US: THE FIRST sale of 2001 at the San Francisco rooms of Pacific Book Auction Galleries – who recently announced that they had acquired significant additional private funding with the aim of extending their marketing and professional services – took place on January 18 and offered one man’s angling library.

A twist of a corkscrew opens two vintage sale days of astonishing bidding

26 March 2001

Lowly-rated architect’s table sells at £24,000 UK: OCCASIONALLY a dream sale comes along for the auctioneer that needs no selling and takes off for no apparent reason. It happened at Nottingham where Neales’ specialist Bruce Fearne enjoyed taking some startling bids from privates and trade alike, for no obvious reason.

Carolus Linnaeus’ Systema naturae...

26 March 2001

Pictured here is the title page of one of the more important publications in the history of science – Carolus Linnaeus’ Systema naturae... of 1735, which laid the groundwork for the systematic classification of plants and animals.

Locke’s Essay Concerning Humane Understanding

26 March 2001

A 1690 first of Locke’s Essay Concerning Humane Understanding, bound in contemporary English mottled calf gilt and formerly in Sir Isaac Newton’s library, that reached $190,000 (£131,035) was acquired by Freilich at the Haskell F. Norman sales of 1998, when the price was $200,000.

Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, Persuasion and Emma

19 March 2001

UK: IN THE original grey-brown paper boards with printed paper labels on the spines, these first edition copies of Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, four vols. 1818, and Emma, three vols. 1816, sold at £19,000 and £22,000 respectively to an un-named US dealer.

Mrs Henry Wood’s East Lynne

19 March 2001

UK: THIS elaborately gilt violet cloth binding on an 1861 first edition of Mrs Henry Wood’s East Lynne was identified by Sotheby’s as Carter’s B ‘Presentation Binding’ but their view on the value of this copy – which had all edges gilt but was fragile at the hinges and partially split in Vol. III – was a modest £600-800.

Nibbling at Defoe’s verse…

19 March 2001

UK: WRITTEN in Daniel Defoe’s characteristically neat hand, this is one of only nine recorded examples of his autograph verse, and though small creatures have nibbled into this copy of his poem, Of resignation, seven of those other verse specimens are in the celebrated Defoe notebook in the Huntington Library and the other is in the Portland Collection at the University of Nottingham, leaving this as the only example still in private hands.

The stamp of history…

19 March 2001

EIRE: WHYTES of Dublin held their spring coin sale on February 23. Their regular sale results are very useful for gauging the market in Irish material and with the enhancement of the Irish economy in recent years there is much interest in it. This is made manifest by the fact that most of the buyers reported by Whytes are resident in Ireland.

The Ronald Segal Collection

19 March 2001

UK: THE HUGE collection of crime, detection and fantasy literature formed by the South African political writer and collector Ronald Segal was featured in last week’s Antiques Trade Gazette (Issue No. 1480), the catalogue also contained a much smaller but broader based ‘English & American Literature’ portion of the Segal collection.

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