Arms, Armour & Militaria

Arms and armour stretches from ancient times to modern conflicts, with weapons ranging from swords and clubs to firearms, armour including helmets and shields, and militaria such as medals, uniforms, flags and ephemera.

Medals and militaria are often sold at auction as specialised categories, with arms and armour sales also held.


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Armour from Susquehanna collection draws international demand to Pennsylvania sale

17 February 2020

A 16th century composite suit of armour that had been assembled by a specialist curator in this field at the Metropolitan Museum of Art proved to be the toast of a sale held by Morphy.

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Pick of the week: Bidder rides off with a £56,000 Ottoman saddle at Edinburgh auction

10 February 2020

The arts of the Ottoman court are performing strongly in the marketplace. The unexpected highlight of Lyon & Turnbull’s Five Centuries auction in Edinburgh on February 5 was an Ottoman saddle.

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Foiled royal kidnap hero’s George Medal for sale

10 February 2020

The George Medal awarded to a brave boxer who stepped in to foil a kidnap attempt on Princess Anne is up for auction at Dix Noonan Webb in London with an estimate of £15,000-20,000 on March 4-5.

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Chinese recognition of German contribution

10 February 2020

Gustav Detring (1842-1913) and Constantin von Hanneken (1854-1925) were two of the most influential Germans living and working in China in the late 19th century.

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Victoria Cross group won by mysterious hero fetches £190,000 at Spink

10 February 2020

Spink (20% buyer’s premium) offered the only Victoria Cross group to appear at auction in 2019.

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Only CGM awarded for the attack on the Tirpitz sold at Dix Noonan Webb

10 February 2020

If the story of the sinking of the Bismarck in 1941 is well known, the fate of sister ship the Tirpitz is less familiar.

New antiques centre backs army veterans

10 February 2020

An antiques centre specialising in militaria including books has opened in the Bedfordshire town of Biddenham.

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Record annual total and sales volume for London's numismatic auction houses

10 February 2020

A record take of £48m and a one-third increase in the number of lots available to bidders – ATG reviews a healthy 2019 for London numismatic saleroom

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Bonhams sell medal marking lifesaving bravery

10 February 2020

This bronze Albert Medal, awarded to Lieutenant John Edward Gibbons (1905-71) for saving life at sea, sold for £8000 (plus 20% buyer’s premium) at Bonhams Knightsbridge.

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Antique arms fair moves from Olympia to Hammersmith

27 January 2020

The arms fair held in the Pillar Hall in Olympia is moving to another venue in west London which provides greater space.

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Pick of the week: Rusty Scottish Highland sword makes £30,000

27 January 2020

Claymores (the word comes from the Scottish Gaelic claidheamh-mor meaning ‘great sword’) were the weapon of choice in the ongoing warfare between Highland clans and border skirmishes with the English from c.1400-1700.

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Armour through the ages: three lots commanding bids in winter sales

20 January 2020

Rare and well-preserved armour from pre-history to the 17th century was well received in the pre-Christmas sales. Three examples are pictured here.

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Go for a Gatling to get bling for your bucks

20 January 2020

Any museum or collector seeking a centrepiece for their display need look no further than the Gatling gun – a pivotal invention that makes its presence felt by its sheer size and bling.

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Five examples showing how exotic Eastern blades remain a key fixture at auction

20 January 2020

Edged weapons from the East continue to feature regularly among the top lots in auctions across the world. Awareness of the rich array of culturally-significant weapons to be found in Western collections has grown as internet technology reaches a new international audience.

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Acting class – Impressive collection sold at Bonhams

20 January 2020

The impressive arms offered in London from a collection which supplied weapons for many films were far from being theatrical props

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Holts heads home to the rural charm of Norfolk

20 January 2020

December 10 marked a significant step in the history of specialist sporting and antique gun auction house Holts (25-20% buyer’s premium).

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Rock Island auction goes supersize

20 January 2020

If proof were needed that firearms sales are simply conducted on a completely different scale in the US, one need look no further than the three-day sale at Rock Island Auctions (18.5% buyer’s premium) in Illinois on December 6-8.

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Stone Age weapons at the cutting edge of early technology

20 January 2020

One fascinating section of a recent Thomas Del Mar (25% buyer’s premium) sale featured Stone Age and Viking weapons and artefacts from a European private collection.

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Sabres suggest the swashbuckling world of Hornblower

20 January 2020

Two spectacular early-19th century British presentation sabres have turned up in the salerooms recently, one in London and the other in Munich.

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Dummy paratrooper 'Rupert' drops in for D-Day

20 January 2020

‘Rupert’ is one of the dummy paratroopers which were dropped over German-occupied France in the early hours of June 6, 1944. Made from burlap and weighted with sand, these were intended to serve as a distraction during the D-Day landings.

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