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The dodo was first spotted by Dutch sailors on Mauritius in 1598 but was hunted to extinction within 100 years.

A dodo bone is being offered at Sworders on February 13 in Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex. It is thought to be only the third time a dodo bone has been offered at auction since 1934.

Blackened in colour from the roots it was encased in, it is thought to have come from the Mare aux Songes swamp on Mauritius, the source of almost all dodo bones now in private and public collections.

It has been consigned by Errol Fuller (b.1947), the author on books about extinction including Dodo from Extinction to Icon, to Sworders’ inaugural Out of the Ordinary auction. This sale of curious and exotic items has been assembled by former Christie’s South Kensington specialist Mark Wilkinson. Estimate £2000-3000.


In 2017, Cheffins of Cambridge sold a painting by the obscure British war artist Evelyn Dunbar (1906-60) titled Joseph’s Dream. It fetched £60,000, an impressive sum for an artist whose works had not appeared on the market before.

On January 25, the auction house will offer two further works by Dunbar, consigned by the artist’s family. The second, pictured here, is Roadworks, a signed 14 x 18in (36 x 46cm) unframed oil on canvas, thought to depict Strood in Kent, the location of the Dunbar family home.

Believed to have been painted between 1926-28 at the Rochester School of Art, it is estimated at £3000-5000.

cheffins.co.uk or see this item on thesaleroom.com

The 10in (25cm) high lamp base shown above was made by Italian designer Marcello Fantoni (b.1915) and purchased from his studio in Florence.

Modelled as a stoneware pinecone and decorated in a pale blue glaze, the studio-lamp is thought to date from c.1950-60.

The piece is priced at £3200 from 3details at The Blanchard Collective at Froxfield in Wiltshire, and can be wired for electricity at no extra charge.


In c.1844, the Westminster-born architect Charles Barry won a competition to redesign the Palace of Westminster in London. He employed AWN Pugin (1812-52) to design the interior, which included the stained glass, metalwork, wood carving, upholstery, furniture and a royal throne. Pugin also designed a desk for the prime minister’s office in Westminster.

This 5ft 4in x 2ft 5in (1.63m x 75cm) mid-19th century oak gothic revival desk by Gillows of Lancaster is made to the same design.

It is estimated at £3000-5000 in Hutchinson Scott’s January 25-27 sale in Skipton, North Yorkshire.

hutchinsonscott.co.uk or see this item on thesaleroom.com