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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Famous fables at Christie's sale of French family library

28 October 2019

From November 26-28 Christie’s Paris will disperse part of the family library of the Comtesse Martine de Béhague (1869-1939) and Hubert de Ganay (1888-1974).

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American map discoveries in Scotland

28 October 2019

Two early maps of colonial north America come for sale at Ramsay Cornish in Edinburgh on December 7. They were discovered at the Edinburgh home of the late Dr Ann Carswell, an American born in Washington and educated at Cornell and Harvard.

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Poignant plaque for Women’s RAF

28 October 2019

A Great War bronze memorial plaque – the ‘Death Penny’ – awarded to Violet Porter, Women’s Royal Air Force, is estimated at £4000- 5000 in the Spink Orders, Medals and Decorations auction in London on November 27-28.

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Bicorne bidder from the US

28 October 2019

This felt bicorne hat is of a type worn by all ranks of the British heavy cavalry and most light cavalry officers until replaced in 1812 by crested helmets and shakos.

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Pick of the week: No.1 microscope proves it’s still the best

28 October 2019

The opening lot of Flints Auctions’ photographica and scientific instruments sale in Reading on October 18 was an exceptional Victorian microscope.

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Bank account: the earliest days in Britain

28 October 2019

This newly discovered ledger, dated August 18, 1660, to March 16, 1661, was kept in person by Edward Backwell while acting as paymaster to both the Excise and the House of Commons. It carries an estimate of £20,000-40,000 at Bonhams’ Fine Books and Manuscripts sale in Knightsbridge on December 4.

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Great War mascot fits the Bill

28 October 2019

The Old Bill motorcar mascot was a popular item during and after the Great War.

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Pilot’s ups and downs as Adolphe Pegoud collectables offered at auction

28 October 2019

A sale devoted to Military and Aviation History at Dominic Winter in South Cerney on November 7 includes a rare invitation ticket c.1913 to witness the first man to ‘loop-the-loop’ in a live demonstration at Brooklands Automobile Racing Club.

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Pistol sets a new standard for French army and navy use

28 October 2019

Among the antique European rarities that are included in Milestone’s November 2 autumn firearms sale in Willoughby, Ohio, will be this 1733 French dragoon flintlock pistol of large size with a 12-inch barrel in .70 bore.

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First issue of James Joyce’s 'Ulysses' in Chicago sale

28 October 2019

Copy No 74 of the 100 signed, first issue copies of James Joyce’s 'Ulysses' is estimated at $120,000-180,000 in November 5 sale being held by Hindman of Chicago.

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Chelsea book fair previews – including Arthur Conan Doyle first edition

28 October 2019

The ABA Chelsea Rare Book Fair is one of two major London events held annually by the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association.

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Music box tunes in at 20-times guide

28 October 2019

Selling at some 20 times the estimate, a 19th century mahogany-cased music box was the surprise success at Batemans’ (20% buyer’s premium) sale at Stamford on October 5.

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William Nicholson’s 'Alphabet' in San Francisco sale

28 October 2019

With the title and 26 plates tipped onto brown paper leaves, a large ‘library edition’ copy of William Nicholson’s famous Alphabet, published by Heinemann in 1898, is estimated at $800-1200 in a November 7 sale at PBA Galleries of San Francisco.

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Book collector interview: Social history of the printed word

28 October 2019

Collector turned dealer is writing an in-depth series on this often overlooked aspect of books. By Jeremy Carson

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Letters reveal a time of turmoil

28 October 2019

English Civil War material is of particular note in a broad-ranging Somerset auction

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Tribute to a local hero

28 October 2019

It’s a simple message but a powerful one. The words Welcome Home are stamped on the front of a rare first World War tribute medal to J Day (believed to be John Day) issued by the Working Men’s Club for the Yorkshire village of Heckmondwike.

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Celtic medal to club legend sells in Glasgow

28 October 2019

A reminder of football’s early days, when huge crowds watched teams from the Scottish league playing counterparts from England, this 15ct gold medal with enamelled Scottish lion rampant was a hit when offered in its spiritual home of Glasgow by McTear’s (24% buyer’s premium).

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Fan adulation for naval hero Nelson

28 October 2019

Nelson’s naval heroics earned him many fans – and among the many souvenirs they bought to mark his greatness were fans of the cooling variety.

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RAF helmet soars above estimate

28 October 2019

An RAF Second World War brown leather Type C flying helmet with goggles estimated at £400-500 in the Halls (23% buyer’s premium) Books, Medals & Militaria Auction on August 21 soared to £3400.

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Modern First Editions sale goes Greene

28 October 2019

A sale of Modern First Editions at Bloomsbury Auctions on November 14 includes this ‘near mint’ 1950 copy of Graham Greene’s 'The Third Man and The Fallen Idol'.

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