Collectables

The term ‘collectables’ (or collectibles) encompasses a vast range of items in fields as diverse as arms, armour and militaria, bank notes, cameras, coins, entertainment and sporting memorabilia, stamps, taxidermy, wines and writing equipment.

Some collectables are antiques, others are classed as retro, vintage or curios but all are of value to the collector. In any of these fields, buyers seek out rarities and items with specific associations.

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Pick of the week: Rev Gilpin champions the Romantic ideal

30 November 2020

The artist, cleric, schoolmaster and author William Gilpin (1724-1804) is best known as a champion of the Romantic idea of the picturesque.

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Making moves for Anglo-Saxon ‘chess piece’

30 November 2020

Estimated at £6000-8000, an Anglo-Saxon bronze gaming piece – a metal-detecting find for the consignor – sold for £95,000 (plus premium) at the latest auction at TimeLine in Harwich, Essex.

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Debut with lots of Biblical proportions

30 November 2020

A single leaf from a Gutenberg Bible that sold for a higher than expected $65,000 (£50,980) in a Philadelphia sale this autumn.

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Wallis cracks it in the saleroom

30 November 2020

Unpublished work by mathematician John Wallis who was also a major influence in code breaking sells at Dominic Winter

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ATG letter: Whisky - to ‘e’ or not to ‘e’, that is the question

30 November 2020

MADAM – The correct term for the ‘mirror’ under discussion in Letters, ATG No 2468 is an ‘embossed glass showcard’.

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The web shop window: ‘Princes’ edition’ of epic poem symbolising Holy Roman Emperor

30 November 2020

Thousands of items are available to buy from dealers online. Here we pick out one that caught our eye this week.

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Sang collection of historical documents returns to Sotheby's New York

30 November 2020

Several decades on from the last of the five major auctions Sotheby’s held to disperse items from the remarkable collections of American historical documents and letters formed by Philip (1902-75) and Elsie Sang (1906-97), a further selection appeared at Sotheby’s New York (26/20/13.9%).

British and Irish book auctions: December 2-12, 2020

30 November 2020

Our regular listing of UK and Irish book auctions.

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Memorabilia reveals role of the brave British female pilots of the Second World War

25 November 2020

A medal and other items relating to members of a pioneering group of female pilots who flew in the Second World War is coming up at two auctions.

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Plea to help find missing Darwin notebooks

24 November 2020

Cambridge University Library has launched a public appeal for help to locate two missing notebooks from its archive – including one with Charles Darwin’s famous 1837 ‘Tree of Life’ sketch.

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Gold stater of king Caratacus sets auction record for a British Iron Age coin

23 November 2020

David Sear, author of Roman Coins and their Values, called it “among the most exciting numismatic discoveries of the 21st century, if not of all time”.

Pioneering Arabic printing and a kind of magic in Edinburgh sale

23 November 2020

Edinburgh auction offered 1592 book from first European press dedicated to such a typeface.

America’s undeclared war with France

23 November 2020

Estimated at just $5000 or so but sold at $110,000 (£85,270) in an October 2-3 sale at Brunk Auctions (23% buyer’s premium) in Asheville, North Carolina, was an extensive archive of documents and letters relating to the career of Captain James N Sever.

British and Irish book auctions: November 24-December 5, 2020

23 November 2020

Our regular listing of UK and Irish book auctions.

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How Poe’s $3 became $60,000

23 November 2020

Two very different manuscript lots provided the high spots of a sale in Westport, Connecticut

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Bobby meets his ‘Boswell’

23 November 2020

Top lot in a golfing sale at PBA Galleries (20/15% buyer’s premium) was a 1927 first of Down the Fairway: The Golf Life and Play of Robert T Jones, Jr.

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Buyer brings home the bison

23 November 2020

Three of the lots noted here from a Chicago sale of books, manuscripts, pictures and prints sold at record sums – and the fourth brought a price that has only once been bettered.

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Prince Philip letter stars in our pick of five auction highlights sold this week

20 November 2020

ATG’s weekly selection of items that caught bidders’ eyes includes a letter from Prince Philip where the Duke of Edinburgh gives his views about New Zealand.

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Plea to help find Spitfire pilot’s stolen photo

18 November 2020

A Spitfire pilot and his family are appealing to the public and the antiques trade to spot a stolen photograph.

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Pick of the week: Window into 18th century gentry life

16 November 2020

An item of local interest to bidders at Bamfords in Derby was this 18th century account book for Radbourne Hall, the seat of the Chandos-Pole family.

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