The copy of ‘Lady Chatterley’s Lover’, estimated at £10,000-15,000 at Sotheby’s.

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Lady Chatterley – the judge’s copy

A copy of DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover, used by the judge who presided over the 1960 obscenity trial is coming to auction at Sotheby’s in London on October 30, as part of a sale from the home of collectors Christopher Cone and late Stanley J Seeger.

It is now being offered with an estimate £10,000-15,000. The trial is often deemed as a defining moment in British social history, marking the end of one era and the move toward a more liberal and permissive society.

The judge, Sir Lawrence Byrne, carried the book into the trial in a damask bag stitched by his wife, Lady Dorothy Byrne, to hide it from view. She read and annotated his copy ahead of the trial at the Old Bailey.

New president for Christie’s France

Christie’s France current president, François de Ricqlès, will be standing down in the summer of 2019 after 16 years with the company to set up an art advisory business. He will become a member of Christie’s European Advisory board.

The new president will be Cécile Verdier who worked at Sotheby’s France from 2008 leading its decorative arts and design department.

Beginning her career at the Drouot auction centre in 1994, Verdier was at Christie’s from 1997-2007. She will take up her position in summer 2019 following a non-compete period.

Most read

The most clicked-on stories for week September 20-26 on

1 Russian figures taken to 300-times estimate at Tennants’

2 First edition of The Wealth of Nations unearthed

3 Lost Henry VIII tapestry found in Spain on show in UK

4 Only Fools and Horses’ fans win £28,000 prop – dressed as Batman and Robin

5 Bidders snap up letters from Pre-Raphaelite patron

Russian porcelain shines in Leyburn

Huge competition emerged for a set of Russian porcelain figures at Tennants’ Country House sale in Leyburn, North Yorkshire on September 21.

Estimated at £400-600, the winning bid of £190,000 (plus premium) came via

The group of 14 unmarked figures of peasants, representing different ethnographic groups of the Russian Empire, were in the manner of those made by the Gardner Porcelain Factory or those commissioned from the Imperial Porcelain Factory.

Figures from the ‘Peoples of Russia’ series made in the 18th and early 19th centuries are popular with buyers from the former Soviet Union and single examples have made five-figure sums in the past.

Rediscovered royal tapestry on show

A previously lost tapestry, part of a set commissioned by Henry VIII for Hampton Court during the turmoil of the English Reformation, has been rediscovered in Spain.

Briefly in the UK for conservation, it will go on view at London tapestry specialists Franses from October 1-19. The monumental tapestry – nearly 20ft wide – depicts a spectacular bonfire upon which Saint Paul directs the burning of irreligious books of magic.


A rediscovered tapestry from a series of nine on the life of St Paul ordered by Henry VIII around the time of the Act of Supremacy

A strongly political work, it was ordered by Henry VIII during the 1530s around the time of the Act of Supremacy. It was in the royal collection until the 1770s and remained in England until the 1960s.

It is one of six Henrician tapestries which will be exhibited at Franses this autumn.

In Numbers


The number of amendments tabled to the European Commission’s legislative proposal on the import of cultural goods.

Ivory stop press

The British Antique Dealers’ Association estimates that the ivory bill’s restriction will not come into effect until April 2019 and possibly later. See Letters for more information.