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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Early Special Boat Service badges and insignia show the special forces collecting impact on auctions

15 July 2019

The lot description ‘special forces’ always causes a stir among militaria collectors and a particularly good example emerged at specialist auction house Bosleys of Marlow.

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Colin Dexter's Quinn takes top spot

15 July 2019

A Colin Dexter first brought one of the higher bids at Keys (20% buyer’s premium) of Aylsham in its June 13-14 sale.

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Fancied fillies and fancy embroidery

15 July 2019

An 1841 guide to London’s ladies of the night sold by Hansons for £3300 featured recently in ATG (No 2390), and one of the many rarities that emerged from the recent Gloucestershire sale of the late Martin Orsky’s library was a group of four 18th century broadsides advertising prostitutes.

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Brahms booms in vinyl revival

15 July 2019

The resurrection of vinyl continues apace as was evident when a large collection of classical records offered by Ledbury auction house John Goodwin (15% buyer’s premium) attracted specialist trade and private interest from all over the world.

British and Irish book auctions: July 16-27, 2019

15 July 2019

Our listing of British and Irish book auctions taking place from July 16-27, 2019.

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Louis Vuitton trunk shifts at £7200

15 July 2019

Pleased as the vendors were to be told by Gloucestershire auctioneer Martin Lambert that a 1920s trunk from their late parents’ home could be worth £2000, they were happier when pre-sale interest in Tayler & Fletcher ’s (18% buyer’s premium) sale brought a revised estimate of £2500-4000.

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Bird images by Elizabeth Gould takes centre stage at Sotheran’s show

15 July 2019

Vivid and lifelike, the lithograph of an Ariel Toucan shown below first appeared in a monograph by British naturalist John Gould (1804-81), 'The Bird Man'. Despite being in the hand of his wife Elizabeth (1804-41), this, like most of the illustrations in John’s publications, was long considered to be essentially his work.

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Boer War group puts the boot in

15 July 2019

An “extremely rare” grouping of military items including a British 1899 issue leather hobnail boot with a shrapnel hole sold for £6500 at a Buckinghamshire auction on July 3.

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Ulysses makes latest epic price

15 July 2019

Stand-out lot in a recent Irish sale was one of the 100 special copies of Ulysses printed on Dutch handmade paper by Van Gelder that James Joyce signed on publication in Paris in 1922.

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Musical boxes tune up in two auctions

15 July 2019

Two musical boxes catching the eye and ear among the small vertu sections at summer silver sales.

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Emmeline Pankhurst biography by her daughter sold at Forum Auctions

15 July 2019

For three years now Forum Auctions (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) has, in addition to its high-profile auctions, been holding fortnightly, online-only timed sales that in their diverse content, it feels, act as a useful bellwether for the book world at large.

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Beatles' original 1962 management contract sold at auction

12 July 2019

The Beatles’ original management contract with Brian Epstein has been sold at Sotheby’s for £220,000 (plus premium).

 US Open trophy by Tiffany that Boris Becker won

Replica US Open trophy leads auction of items seized from tennis star Boris Becker

11 July 2019

The auction of sporting memorabilia seized from Boris Becker has finally taken place with some extraordinary prices bid for a series of trophies won by the bankrupt tennis star.

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Lisbon Lion Tommy Gemmell's boots worn in 1967 European Cup final won by Celtic on offer in Glasgow auction

10 July 2019

Celtic legend Tommy Gemmell’s boots from the 1967 European Cup final are going under the hammer at a Glasgow auction house on July 19.

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Plaque professing thanks to God for deliverance from plague up for auction

09 July 2019

The plague that devastated London in 1665 is well known but an intriguing wooden panel coming up at auction on July 17 shows the disease proved fatal to many thousands in other areas during that era.

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Pick of the week: Print shows bidding for books way back in c.1700

08 July 2019

A rare copy of the earliest-known depiction of a book auction emerged for sale in Gloucestershire at the end of last month.

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Pugin parliamentary letter box posts £4200

08 July 2019

On December 27, 1851, the architect Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860) wrote to Augustus Pugin (1812-52) with a progress report on the interior decoration of the Palace of Westminster.

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Rare and often forgotten books by little-known authors can nonetheless shine at auction

08 July 2019

Two recent auctions offered a number of 18th and 19th century English novels by authors unfamiliar to many readers but who are nevertheless in demand through their rare surviving works.

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Hirschfeld steps into the saleroom

08 July 2019

Works produced in the 1940s by Al Hirschfeld figured prominently among the higher priced lots at a June 4 Illustration Art sale held in New York.

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Magic Midget makes mighty saleroom price

08 July 2019

Racing along to a double-estimate £2400, this tinplate clockwork Tri-ang Magic Midget made by Line Bros in 1933, led the field at the 450-lot toys sale at Gildings (15% buyer’s premium) in Market Harborough on June 24.

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