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Bonhams'(19.5/10% buyer's premium) sizeable offering was divided into two sessions: on May 18 and May 20. The first comprised 141 lots of 19th century vintage followed by a 40-lot single-owner property - photographs from the collection of the late Arthur Goldsmith, a prominent editor and writer on photography - with the remaining 150 lots devoted to mixed-owner 20th century works. A slightly smaller, 250-lot evening session devoted to more 20th century works followed two days later.

Interest was patchy, the best take-up being for the Goldsmith material which, because it was in very variable condition, was offered without reserve. Here all bar a dozen entries found buyers. Far and away the most sought-after offering was an 1870s anthropological/ethnographical collection of 36 albumen prints depicting 35 portraits of Australian Aboriginals and five colonial bush workers. They were taken by John William Lindt who emigrated to Ausralia in 1896 and while there produced a series of tableau photographs entitled Australian Aboriginals. Although six other collections of Lindt's series are known, all in institutions, this is in the largest. The print condition was also very fine. It sold at the bottom end of its £45,000-62,000 estimate.

The lion's share of Bloomsbury Auctions' (17.5/10% buyer's premium) sale (almost 200 of their 324 lots) was given over to a single-owner collection of predominantly 20th century nudes, figure studies and portraits. Accordingly their proportion of 19th century material was even smaller amounting to around 60 lots. But one mid-19th century entry provided what was very much the day's main attraction, accounting single-handledly for almost half the £126,000 total. This was another anthropological offering, a collection of 280 albumen print portraits of different nationalities photographed by Louis Rousseau and Philippe-Jacques Potteau for the Musée d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris between 1855 and 1869. The majority of the subjects were members of foreign embassies or trade delegations from Siam, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, China and Japan who were photographed as single portraits or small group studies at a studio near the Jardin des Plantes in Paris. Although single images or small groups from this series appear on the market from time to time, Bloomsbury believe this is the largest collection to be offered for sale. It sold for £55,000, against a £60,000-80,000 estimate, to a private collector.