Monday 1st May, 2017
One of the UK's principal Fine Art Auctioneers, with General Sales, 
Fine Art Sales, Collectors Sales and Sporting Sales
 

Fine Art Sales Results - 17th, 18th, 20th & 21st January 2011...

To view our Fine Art Sales Results for 17th, 18th, 20th and 21st January 2011, please select the 'Auctions' tab above and then select 'Past Sales'.  The results can then be viewed if you view the catalogue for the results you require.  


Best Ever Results for a Jewellery Sale...

Buyers on the fourth day of Lawrences' Fine Art week in Crewkerne witnessed some determined bidding for jewellery and ceramics and helped the Somerset firm to report their best ever results for a jewellery sale. 

 

A remarkable cache of fine jewels that had lain forgotten in a bank until its re-emergence last autumn combined all the vital elements of a good news story: the West Country vendors were unaware of the value of the hoard; the quality was exceptional and the estimates encouraged bidders that the lots were too good to miss. The collection constituted the last 29 lots of the 300 lot auction of jewellery on January 20th and the least expensive item, an exquisite Victorian seed pearl brooch, exceeded its estimate of £80-100 to make £350  and set the tone for the collection as a whole. An Art Deco emerald and diamond bracelet raced beyond is £1500-2000 guide to make £6210; a tourmaline and diamond brooch from the same era made £4300; and Victorian pieces fared well with a diamond, enamel and gold bracelet (£5730) and an emerald and diamond brooch (£5370) selling well.  

 

The highlights, however, were saved for the end. A "Belle Epoque" emerald and diamond ring took £17,320 against hopes of £3000-5000; a pair of Georgian ruby and diamond girandole drop earrings made £35,850 and the complementary brooch neatly matched that price, too. A Victorian ruby and diamond necklace from top Mayfair jewellers S. J. Phillips, offered in its original case, went beyond its £15000-20000 estimate to make £54,970 and an exemplary emerald and diamond necklace composed of fifteen rectangular emeralds surrounded by scores of circular-cut diamonds, offered with matching earrings, had also come from S. J. Phillips. The jewellers were determined to buy this lot back and bid determinedly by telephone in order to secure it for £119,500 against hopes of £20,000-30,000 (image 1608) . The collection realised £339,230 with trade dominating the buyers after outpacing some adamant private bidders.

 

Elsewhere in the section, a pair of diamond, enamel and gold cufflinks by Cartier made £5970; a pair by Louis Wiese on a hunting theme was bought for £5370; an Art Deco ruby and diamond ring made £5250; and 2.7 carats of diamonds in a three stone ring ensured interest up to £5970. The whole jewellery section totalled £513,000, a record for the firm for a jewellery sale. 

 

Eastern bidders dominated the ceramics section.  A collection of Persian ceramics, assembled by Mr Bonar Sykes whilst Head of Chancery at the British Embassy in Tehran in the early 1960's and offered as 16 lots totalled £21,170 with an earthenware jug in the form of a bull making £3100. Jade pieces saw some keen bidding and a model of a seated rat, just 4cm high, made £9560 whilst a delicately pierced bowl with cover and stand was bought for £5370. A pair of Cantonese famille rose vases, 60cm high, made £4540 and two blue and white Kangxi items made £5130 against hopes of just £2000

 

 


Forthcoming Militaria, Collectors & Sporting Sale - May 2011...

**FORTHCOMING MILITARIA, COLLECTORS & SPORTING SALE 2011** 

 

 

Our next Naval, Militaria, Collectors and Sporting sale will be a two day sale on Thursday 5th May (Naval Sale & Militaria) and Friday 6th May (Coins, Collectors & Sporting).

 

 

 


Terrific Successes in Lawrences 550-Lot Sale of Books...

Terrific successes in Lawrences' 550-lot sale of books, maps and manuscripts on January 17th started the new year on a firm footing for the Crewkerne auctioneers.

 

Amongst the many highlights was the £4300 paid for a much-loved first edition of Margery Williams' small classic "The Velveteen Rabbit", published in 1922 with illustrations by William Nicholson. The informal friendliness of such a book was offset by serious and determined bidding for topography both near and far: William Coxe's "Historical Tour in Monmouthshire" of 1801 was bid to £1020 and John Milford's "Observations Made During a Tour Through the Pyrenees" was the author's own copy from 1818. It was accompanied by two hand-written sightseeing accounts by the writer and this helped it to make £1970. Sir Edward Augustus Inglefield's "Chart Showing the North West Passage" was an uncoloured rolled lithographic map, 57 by 102 cm, that appealed to one buyer at £2330. From a warmer climate, an exceptional volume of Francois Solvyn's "Manners, Customs and Dresses of the Hindoos", published in Calcutta in 1799 and containing 250 hand-coloured etchings, was consigned for sale by a descendant of Sir Robert Chambers, a Chief Justice of Bengal from 1791-1799, and was eagerly contested beyond its estimate to take £33,400 after interest from three continents.

 

Two first editions by very different authors sold well. Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" of 1843 is very common in later editions but the rare first issue made £4300. Ian Fleming's "Live and Let Die" of 1954 is almost worthless in paperback if it is a late edition but the scarce first issue made £3820. Each of these was in line with expectations. A copy of Virginia Woolf's "A  Room of One's Own", 1929, was signed by the author and made £3340.

 

Books from the library of Anthony Pitt-Rivers, from a collection formed by his ancestor Lt. General Augustus Lane Fox Pitt-Rivers (1827-900) and later descendants, focused upon archaeology and anthropology but included numerous books on arts, architecture, children's literature, topography, tribal art, law, philosophy and many other fields. Sold as 108 separate lots, highlights included Inigo Jones's "The Designs" of 1727 (£3460), the rare set of Captain Cook's three voyages published in 1773-1785 (£9560), William Stukeley's "Itinerarium Curiosum" of 1776 (£1910) and Capt John Rutherford's translation of "The Principal Orations of Cicero" (£2390). The whole library realised just over £42,500, 50% above expectations.

 

However, the highlight of the day was the last lot, an exceptionally unusual manuscript map of North East America and Newfoundland, drawn by English "plattmaker" (cartographer) John Thornton in 1699. It had been acquired by Harold Fortington, a British businessman with American and Canadian connections in the 1930s, and was sold by the executors of his daughter's estate. Its appeal was a combination of rarity, quality, good condition and the desirability of the subject matter as so little of the coast of Newfoundland was charted at that time. The folded vellum sheet had been found in the attic of the daughter's house in Aberdeenshire and was bought for £203,150 against an estimate of £50,000-80,000 (see illustration). 

 


Jewellery Hoard From Bank Makes Over 330,000....

A remarkable cache of fine jewels that had lain forgotten in a bank until its re-emergence last autumn combined all the vital elements of a good news story: the West Country vendors were unaware of the value of the hoard; the quality was exceptional and the estimates encouraged bidders that the lots were too good to miss. The collection constituted the last 29 lots of the 300 lot auction of jewellery at Lawrences of Crewkerne on January 20th and the least expensive item, an exquisite Victorian seed pearl brooch, exceeded its estimate of £80-100 to make £350  and set the tone for the collection as a whole. An Art Deco emerald and diamond bracelet raced beyond is £1500-2000 guide to make £6210; a tourmaline and diamond brooch from the same era made £4300; and Victorian pieces fared well with a diamond, enamel and gold bracelet (£5730) and an emerald and diamond brooch (£5370) selling well.  

 

The highlights, however, were saved for the end. A "Belle Epoque" emerald and diamond ring took £17,320 against hopes of £3000-5000; a pair of Georgian ruby and diamond girandole drop earrings made £35,850 and the complementary brooch neatly matched that price, too. A Victorian ruby and diamond necklace from top Mayfair jewellers S. J. Phillips, offered in its original case, went beyond its £15000-20000 estimate to make £54,970 (image 1607) and an exemplary emerald and diamond necklace composed of fifteen rectangular emeralds surrounded by scores of circular-cut diamonds, offered with matching earrings, had also come from S. J. Phillips. The jewellers were determined to buy this lot back and bid determinedly by telephone in order to secure it for £119,500 against hopes of £20,000-30,000 (image 1608) . The collection realised £339,230 with trade dominating the buyers after outpacing some adamant private bidders.

 

Elsewhere in the section, a pair of diamond, enamel and gold cufflinks by Cartier made £5970; a pair by Louis Wiese on a hunting theme was bought for £5370; an Art Deco ruby and diamond ring made £5250; and 2.7 carats of diamonds in a three stone ring ensured interest up to £5970. The whole jewellery section totalled £513,000, a record for the firm for a jewellery sale. 


Over 650-Lots of Silver & Vertu went Under The Hammer...

Lawrences' auction in Crewkerne last week ran to five busy days of sales and there were highlights on each day. Over 650 lots of silver and vertu went under the hammer on Tuesday and there were hoards of collectors in the room throughout the day.

 

One of Director Alex Butcher's numerous areas of specialist knowledge is early spoons and there were many rare and desirable examples on offer. A  seal top spoon from the reign of Edward VI (1548) made £5490 whilst an early Elizabeth I spoon made £3940. Brisk bidding for the cutlery and flatware saw a total in excess of £105,000 for this section alone.

 

Whilst the strong price for silver has lifted the whole market in recent years, attention focused keenly on the unusual pieces and the lots that had quirky collectors' appeal. For example, a French tongue depressor for French vets to administer medicine to horses made £1790; a silvergilt dental mirror by Aspreys made £330; an early 18th Century Christening cup from the Channel Isles took £980; a Victorian hambone holder made £380; a stylishly sinuous and elegant electroplated metronome ("Pinfold's Patent") made £170; an Edwardian model of a garden rake made £470; a rare Charles II tumbler cup of pleasingly simple design made £1310; and a fine quality modern cast stirrup cup with startlingly realistic modelling as a horse's head galloped away to make £5975 (see illustration).

 

Amidst the scores of coffee pots, teapots, salvers, candletsicks and mustard pots there was a group of interesting modern works from the estate of the industrial designer and silversmith, Brian Asquith (1930-2008).  The items were varied and were offered as 16 lots: a teapot (similar to an example in the Goldsmiths' Hall) made £740; a pair of wine coasters with a textured frieze dated from c.1971 and made £450; and a cricket trophy formed of five cricket balls appealed to silver collectors and cricket fans alike to make £1670.

 

For the more traditional collector, two cast Victorian table fighters, designed as regimental figures, exceeded expectations to make £3220; a George II Rococo kettle dated from 1739 and had a pleasingly frivolous bird mask spout (£1050); and a "China Trade" teapot from c.1790, made in Canton in direct imitation of an English Georgian example, was bid to £1550.

 

Amongst the objects of vertu, a castle top snuff box by Francis Clarke exemplified the best designs of the 1830's and made £830 whilst another by the same maker showing horses and jockeys made £2390; a silvergilt mounted ivory pendant badge by Omar Ramsden made £590; a George III Irish snuff box showed the vigour of Irish collectors by taking £1020; a Liberty and Co silver and enamel cigarette box from 1912 commanded £2270; and a Japanese ivory and shibayama card case saw determined bidders contest it to £3340. A tiny 3.5cm bloodstone vinaigrette in the form of an egg was by Carlo and Arthur Giuliano and proved, once again, that small is beautiful by making £1910.