Greek, Roman, Egyptian & Other Antiquities

The antiquities market comprises artefacts and works of art made by ancient civilisations including statues, coins, jewellery and arms and armour.

Provenance is one of the most important considerations when trading in this sector as there is a long history of looting from archaeological sites.

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Antiquities at BRAFA 2018

15 January 2018

Antiquities is one of BRAFA’s strong suits in terms of exhibitor volume. Around 10 specialists in this field are standing, plus a number of others that mix antiquities with, for example, Asian art.

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Salerooms feel the tribe is right

15 January 2018

The rising popularity of the tribal art collecting scene is tempting auction houses to take steps in that direction.

Duck

Antiquities seized from billionaire collector after anti-trafficking unit launched in New York

09 January 2018

Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus R. Vance Jr, has swooped on the antiquities collection of hedge-fund manager and philanthropist Michael H. Steinhardt.

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Rupert Wace sells ancient Babylonian rarity in ‘London Art Week’ show

02 January 2018

A Babylonian brick with a stamped inscription was among the sales dealership Rupert Wace Ancient Art made as part of its December exhibition Dizygotica.

Leekfrith

Iron Age gold torcs head to Stoke museum after fundraising target reached

19 December 2017

A collection of Iron Age gold jewellery is to go on display at Stoke-on-Trent’s Potteries Museum & Art Gallery after fundraising hit the £325,000 target.

Winfarthing treasure

Boom in metal-detecting helps ‘treasure’ numbers hit a record

05 December 2017

A record amount of ‘treasure’ has been found in Britain’s fields and ditches by members of the public in the past year.

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Persepolis relief seized in New York

06 November 2017

The ownership of a Persian limestone relief sculpture from Persepolis is under investigation by the Manhattan district attorney’s office after it was seized from the stand of Rupert Wace Ancient Art at TEFAF New York.

Park Avenue Armory

Persian limestone sculpture seized by police from antiquities dealer at TEFAF New York

30 October 2017

The Manhattan district attorney’s office has seized a Persian limestone relief fragment from the stand of a dealer at TEFAF New York amid accusations it had been stolen.

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‘Looted’ vases row reflects antiquities trade pitfalls

30 October 2017

A dispute over two 4th century BC Grecian vases offered at Frieze Masters in London by a Swiss dealer is the latest case highlighting the complexity of the ownership of antiquities.

Stargazer case looks at fundamental art issues

18 September 2017

Christie’s sale of an ancient marble idol has created an art world battleground between Turkey and the saleroom, testing ownership laws...

Iron age torc

Stoke-on-Trent’s Potteries museum welcomes home Wedgwood vase and kicks of fundraising for Iron Age torcs

16 September 2017

The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent had a double celebration today when it welcomed home a vase by master potter Josiah Wedgwood and launched a fundraising campaign to buy the Leekfrith Iron Age Torcs.

Patera

West London antiques cheat pleads guilty to attempts to defraud auction houses

13 September 2017

A Poundland notebook helped convict a fraudster attempting to sell fake antiques through auction houses in London and Essex.

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Mosaic fits into the Monaco mix

14 August 2017

The sales held by a variety of Monaco auction houses that are a feature of the summer season are traditionally big on jewellery, cars and Hermès handbags and other luxury accessories and modern art.

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Judge orders Christie's to name Stargazer ‘buyer’

07 August 2017

A US judge has ordered Christie’s to identify the winning bidder of the $12.5m (£9.7m) Guennol Stargazer, an ancient Anatolian idol auctioned in New York in April.

Roman mosaic

French museum buys ancient mosaic from auction in Monaco

02 August 2017

An example of a Gallo-Roman mosaic floor from around 150-200AD that would have decorated the floor of a wealthy villa in Vienne in Southern France, has just been acquired by the city’s museum from an auction in Monaco.

Rijksmuseum van Oudheden bronze dirk

Ancient ‘peat bog’ bronze sword sells to Dutch museum at Christie’s

24 July 2017

A museum in The Netherlands has bought a 3000-year-old ceremonial sword at a Christie’s auction. It had been found around 120 years ago in a peat bog.

cuneiform tablets

US retailer fined after seizure of illegally imported cultural property

10 July 2017

A large high street chain in the US has been fined $3m in connection with the purchase and importing of a large number of ancient Iraqi artefacts.

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Reflections on the £390,000 ‘perfect storm’

10 July 2017

A moment of good old-fashioned saleroom drama emerged at Christie’s antiquities sale on July 5 when an Etruscan bronze mirror, estimated at £10,000-15,000, sold at £390,000 (plus 25/20/12% buyer’s premium). The buyer was a European institution.

Europe ‘not a haven’ for ancient loot says global trade body

26 June 2017

The global trade body for antiquities dealers has insisted that Europe does not provide a ready market for looted artefacts from conflict zones.

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The fresh face of antiquity

26 June 2017

The antiquities trade’s packed summer schedule got off to a bright start at Sotheby’s (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) in London. The ancient art sale was the second to be held since the auction house reopened its London unit in 2016. Over the last two decades, Sotheby’s had sold ancient art through its New York saleroom only.

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