The auction process is a key part of the secondary art and antiques market.

Firms of auctioneers usually specialise in a number of fields such as jewellery, ceramics, paintings, Asian art or coins but many also hold general sales where the goods available are not defined by a particular genre and are usually lower in value.

Auctioneers often provide other services such as probate and insurance valuations.


Found in the attic: Benjamin money

25 July 2006

Four Beatrix Potter watercolour Christmas cards, recently discovered in a Wiltshire attic, will be sold by Highworth, Swindon auctioneers Kidson-Trigg on September 20. The cards have been consigned by descendants of the original recipients, Elizabeth (1888-1977) and Elinor (1886-1979) Lupton.


Cup runneth over for Chiswick Auction Rooms

25 July 2006

Underscoring a strength of demand for rhinoceros horn pieces seen in the recent specialist Asian sales, Chiswick Auctions achieved a house record on July 18 when this rhinoceros horn libation cup carved with carp feeding on a waterlily sold to a Taiwanese dealer at £46,000 (plus 15 per cent buyer’s premium). The 18th or possibly 17th century vessel was discovered by auctioneer William Rouse on the sideboard of a modest home in Hanwell, one of West London’s less fashionable suburbs.

Chorley buys out antiques arm of BK

25 July 2006

After almost 150 years as chattels auctioneers, Bruton Knowles have sold their art and antiques division to former department head Simon Chorley.


Line up for 4pm kick-off

25 July 2006

The fourth annual ATG-sponsored football match between the Dealers and the Auctioneers will take place at the Bank of England sports ground in Roehampton on Friday, September 1.

Tragedy as Richard Allen dies in road accident

25 July 2006

FRIENDS, relatives and colleagues have been shocked by the death of Richard Allen, former Director of Halls fine art auctioneers of Shropshire, in a road accident last Thursday. The tragedy occurred as Mr Allen was returning from a viewing.

That’ll be the Dray – Paris boost for Christie’s

25 July 2006

The power of one major collection to transform an auction company’s figures was dramatically shown this month when Christie’s France announced sales figures of €122.8m (including premiums) for the first half of 2006.

Up to speed – M1 number plate sets £300,000 record at Goodwood

18 July 2006

M1, one of the most sought-after UK registration numbers, set a new world record price for a car number plate when it sold for £300,000 at Bonhams’ Goodwood Festival of Speed sale of Sports, Competition and Collectors’ Motor Cars and Automobilia on July 7.


When did you last see your Dadd?

18 July 2006

ENIGMATIC, elusive, rarely seen, and classified as mad – but that’s our Dadd!


Cook’s proof that money can indeed grow on trees

18 July 2006

OF the many publications generated by Captain Cook’s exploits in the Pacific, the most curious is surely A Catalogue of the Different Specimens of Cloth Collected in the Three Voyages of Captain Cook to the Southern Hemisphere...

Now Christie’s launch live online bidding service

18 July 2006

Christie’s took a major step into the world of virtual auctioneering last week with the launch of Christie’sLIVE, a real-time online bidding facility which they are to roll out over the next six months.


Is £2.5m a bargain for the Bard?

18 July 2006

IT set a British auction record for a Shakespeare First Folio and made the highest price ever seen for a printed book at Sotheby’s London (20/12% buyer’s premium) – but hushed voices at the back of the saleroom were suggesting that the £2.5m hammer price represented pretty good value for a near-perfect copy of the most important book in English literature.

Martin Luther King archive goes to his alma mater

10 July 2006

IN what must be one of the least surprising private treaty sales negotiated, The Martin Luther King Jr Collection will go to Morehouse College, Dr King's alma mater in his home city of Atlanta.


Napoleon wins a late victory at £60,000

10 July 2006

An early 19th century boxwood and bone Napoleonic prisoner-of-war model of the Third Rate 74-gun HMS Mars fired a shot across the bows at Hampton & Littlewood's (15% buyer's premium) Maritime Sale in Exeter on June 21 when it set a new house record of £60,000.

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Spink set new English coin record with £400,000 for Double Leopard

04 July 2006

There was nothing dull or predictable about the coin sale at Spink on June 29 when an expectant crowd gathered to witness the sale of one of the rarest of English Medieval coins: the gold Double Leopard florin of Edward III which was minted for only a few months in 1344.

Both sides claim victory in Venice auctions battle

04 July 2006

A COURT ruling means new Venice auction house San Marco can proceed with their July 8-9 sale - but only under strict conditions.


Blanket approval for outstanding sewing

04 July 2006

More suited to the wall than the bed and more a piece of social history than a functional textile, this 19th century appliqué felt coverlet reaped the rewards when it sold for £24,000 (plus premium) at Kerry Taylor auctions in association with Sotheby's on June 26.


More money but less drama

26 June 2006

Record turnover at London flagship sales but the buzz of the 1980s has gone


Stitched, greased and ready to fight

26 June 2006

Compiled in the second half of the 15th century, the Fechtbuch of Hans Talhoffer (fl. 1435-82), the most celebrated and experienced fighting-master of the age, is a veritable encyclopaedia of medieval combat.


Princess Margaret sale nets £11.6m

24 June 2006

Given today’s obsession with celebrity, especially Royal celebrity, it was always on the cards that Christie’s sale last week of Princess Margaret’s jewellery, silver and other personal belongings was going to make much more than the £2m-3m predicted.


Banner headline: the $11m flag

24 June 2006

Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton was one of the most notorious British commanders of the American Revolution. After leading a series of successful operations in both the north and south, he returned home after the war as one of the most famous men in England, sat for a portrait by Sir Joshua Reynolds and began a long-term affair with actress and royal consort Mary Robinson.