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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Summer sale quest for first Harry Potter editions

12 August 2019

Copies of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone impressed in several summer sales.

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Tanto tantalises bidders at Special Auction Services

12 August 2019

Special Auction Services’ (17.5% buyer’s premium) sale in Newbury on July 9 included a wide selection of edged weapons which was topped by a mid-19th century Japanese short sword or tanto estimated at £200-300.

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Scottish swords in battle and play

12 August 2019

A Battle of Culloden period Clan MacTavish silver inlaid basket-hilted back sword sold for £4800, just below top estimate, at the Antony Cribb (22% buyer’s premium) auction on July 30.

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‘Thank heavens for the internet’

12 August 2019

Catalogued together with an incomplete silver propelling pencil with a bloodstone terminal, a silver Art Deco pocket lighter with a timepiece sold at £5200 (estimate £100-200) at Amersham Auction Rooms (17.5% buyer’s premium) on July 11.

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Siamese sword has eastern edge

12 August 2019

The huge variety of exotic arms brought back to Europe from the East during colonial days is becoming an increasingly lucrative area of business for auction houses.

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Household Cavalry blades in demand

12 August 2019

The collecting of English military swords is a science in itself.

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Stopping power to halt an angry tiger

12 August 2019

In the days of the British Raj there was no shortage of would-be shikaris hoping to bag a tiger in India. At the same time plenty of London gunsmiths were ready to supply them with all the fire-power they could persuade them to buy.

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Russian shashka sword emerges in Amersham

12 August 2019

A 19th century Russian shashka sword with fine niello-worked ornament sold for £6700 against an estimate of £250-450 at Amersham Auction Rooms (17.5% buyer’s premium) on August 1.

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Arms fair now in 52nd year

12 August 2019

The 102nd staging of the London Antique Arms Fair is on Saturday, August 24.

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Plenty of quality from BADA member of 46 years

12 August 2019

The personal enthusiasm of John Braund of Turpin’s Antiques, who died in January aged 90, was early oak and associated metalware.

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Robot at the rocket wheel

12 August 2019

This c.1960s Japanese Robot Rocket Ship made by Modern Toys (Masudaya) will feature in the two-day Basics summer auction to be held by Bertoia on August 22-23.

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Clown acrobat swings in

12 August 2019

This clown acrobat of c.1910 is one of around 150 automata from the Michael Kam collection that feature in the Potter & Potter August 24 auction in Chicago.

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Venetian travel poster, diamond clutch bag and a puffin painting – four auction highlights that caught bidders’ eyes in the last week

09 August 2019

ATG’s selection of hammer highlights over the past week includes a Venetian travel poster of a gondolier, a diamond evening clutch bag and a painting of a lady with a puffin.

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Terracotta figure of legendary cricketer WG Grace hits £10,000 hammer in Canterbury auction

08 August 2019

With the new cricket world champions facing an uphill struggle after being thrashed in the first Ashes test by the Aussies, England could do with summoning the spirit of WG Grace.

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The perfect gift for Boris Johnson? A Downing Street enamel sign up for auction in Wiltshire

06 August 2019

Prime Minister Boris Johnson sacked more than half of Theresa May’s cabinet and brought in his own top-level team last month. Those MPs trying to stay in his good books may want to win him over with a thoughtful gift.

DNW challenges status quo with premium rise at numismatic sales

05 August 2019

Dix Noonan Webb (DNW) has become the first UK numismatics auction house to set its buyer’s premium beyond 20%. The London coins, medal and jewellery specialist will charge a premium of 24% from September.

Dracula lobby card

Dracula lobby cards from 1931 film taken to record high in Dallas

05 August 2019

Two lobby cards for the 1931 film ‘Dracula’ led Heritage Auctions’ latest sale of movie posters when each sold for a six-figure sum.

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Earlier great leaps for mankind

05 August 2019

Pioneering astronomical works which appeared many centuries before the moon landing sell at auction.

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Thai silver tea kettle bid to triple estimate at Leicestershire auction

05 August 2019

An exceptional example of Thai silversmithing has sold for £13,500 (plus 17.5% buyer’s premium) in Leicestershire.

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Buck’s 'The Good Earth' makes rare appearance in San Francisco

05 August 2019

Published in 1931, Pearl S Buck’s 'The Good Earth' was the best-selling novel in the US for both that and the following year, as well as the winner of a Pulitzer Prize.

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