Nicole Frères music box – £13,000 at Elstob & Elstob.

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The 2ft 4in (72cm) wide engraved box enclosed a 17in (42cm) cylinder playing four tunes. It was guided at £500-700 but sold to a UK collector at £13,000.

It was one of about 100 items consigned to the October 29-31 sale from Waldershare Park, the Earl of Guildford’s Kent home.

The aristocratic provenance was more obvious in the case of a camphor trunk containing the robes and coronet worn by the countess at the coronation of Edward VII.

Estimated at £2000-3000, the lot sold to a UK private buyer at £3600.


Edward VII coronation robe – £3600 at Elstob & Elstob.

Largest sale yet

With nearly 2000 lots, the October 29-31 sale was the largest yet in the firm’s two-year history.

It was led by an anonymous pair of Oxfordshire landscapes which made an unexpected £22,500 (see Art Market, ATG No 2472) and a third five-figure success came with an example of Lalique’s famous opalescent, frosted and polished glass Bacchante vase.

Designed in 1927 and in production for the rest of the century, this 9½in (24.5cm) tall example was engraved No 997 and signed to the rim in block capitals R Lalique France, the initial R indicating it was produced before Lalique’s death in 1945.

In generally good condition, it was estimated at £6000-8000 but went to an overseas collector at £20,000.