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The later globe, dated 1815, represented the earth and was annotated with all the major discoveries and land masses known at the time; the other, dated 1799, mapped the sky with stars, constellations and heavenly features.

At one time, the globes would no doubt have illuminated the inquisitive young minds of the pupils’ predecessors, but this luxury early 19th century item would almost certainly have been originally made to grace the library of a wealthy family. It is thought they may have been purchased after the contents of nearby Kingsweston House were dispersed in the 1930s.

John and William Cary started making globes in 1791 and while their smaller 18in (45cm) examples occasionally turn up at auction and sell for several thousand pounds, the larger 21in (53cm) versions are unusual. Both these globes were missing wooden horizons and supports and the £1000-3000 guideline took into account the battered condition of the celestial globe and the worn condition of the
terrestrial example.

Condition notwithstanding, they were contested on five telephones and sold to a specialist Cheshire buyer at £10,000. If they had been in reasonable order, Bristol Auction Room specialist Leighton
Gillibrand reckoned they may have
made as much as £25,000-£30,000.

The Bristol Auction Rooms, Bristol September 16
Buyer’s premium: 15 per cent