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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Weapon owned by tragic 1912 Antarctic explorer makes eight-times estimate in Kent

24 January 2022

A sword sold at Kent auction house C&T (22% buyer’s premium) belonged to a British Antarctic explorer who died in 1912 – but not with Robert Falcon Scott.

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Arms and armour: Worldwide call to arms

24 January 2022

Munich auction house Hermann Historica (25% buyer’s premium) regularly turns up showstopping lots of arms and armour and the star of the latest sales series was a weapon that was always designed to impress on every level.

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Three pieces of eye-catching armour sold this season

24 January 2022

The most unusual armour lot to emerge in recent sales was the late 16th century German brass parade cuirass which made £86,000 at Thomas Del Mar (20% buyer’s premium) in London on December 8.

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Buyer chases down Russian dagger

24 January 2022

The surprise lot at the sale held on December 11 by Ripon auction house Elstob & Elstob (22% buyer’s premium) was this 19th century Russian hunting dagger.

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How to accessorise in the arms and armour market

24 January 2022

Arms and armour sales often throw out interesting talking points in the way of accessories.

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Swords of honour: a presentation trio

24 January 2022

A Lloyd’s Patriotic Fund sword of £100 value took the honours at a Bonhams’ (27.5/25/20/14.5% buyer’s premium) sale of arms and armour.

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The death penny ‘issued in error’ to a deserter

17 January 2022

The ubiquitous First World War memorial plaques – the ‘death penny’ – need to have a posthumous recipient of note to sell for anything more than £50-100.

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Heroic exploits of naval skipper who later came a cropper

03 January 2022

Many of the unsung British heroes of both world wars served in the royal and merchant navies carrying and protecting supplies to Russia or the USSR.

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One Hand’s battle shield from Little Big Horn on offer

03 January 2022

The sale of Native American art and artefacts at Thomaston Place in Maine on January 14 will include a collection of historical items that mostly date from the 14-year period between the Battle of the Little Bighorn and Wounded Knee.

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‘Tommy’ was a remarkable wartime countess

03 January 2022

A group of medals awarded to a First World War ‘Tommy’ sold for a mid-estimate £2400 at Kent auction house C&T (22% buyer’s premium) on October 20-21. Not that unusual, it would seem.

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Pick of the week: German armour blows off to the Windy City

20 December 2021

Catalogued as ‘fine and exceptionally rare’, a north German parade cuirass is on its way to the Art Institute of Chicago after being sold at auction.

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Napoleon weapons garniture sells for $2.5m in Illinois

13 December 2021

A remarkable garniture of weapons including the sword Napoleon is believed to have carried when he seized power in 1799 sold at an Illinois auction house.

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Shock result for the silver badge of courage

29 November 2021

A silver war badge issued to Lance-Corporal Harold Sandford Mugford of the Machine Gun Corps was a surprise highlight of a Gloucestershire sale.

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Sword soars to £8200 at Dawsons

22 November 2021

Estimated at £200-300, this kaskara sold for £8200 at Dawsons (23% buyer’s premium) in Maidenhead on October 28.

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Moose not on the loose

22 November 2021

Leering 4ft 7in (1.4m) out from the saleroom wall and with a 4ft 2in (50cm) antlers spread, a massive taxidermy moose head and shoulders was the major trophy at the best-yet biannual Country and Sporting sale at Mitchells (22% buyer’s premium).

Vietnamese headdress

Vietnamese headdress makes 1000-times guide

08 November 2021

Multi-estimate sums are not confined to Chinese works of art.

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Garniture given to Napoleon up for sale in Illinois

01 November 2021

The 200th anniversary of Napoleon Bonaparte’s death has brought some important consignments to market.

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Auction full of West Country wonders

18 October 2021

Including seafaring, tin, copper, studio potteries and fishing, a Penzance sale covered just about everything from the region bar pasties.

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Classic country house offering brings spectacular selection of lots

04 October 2021

Irish castle home of earls about to be turned into hotel and spa furnishes a remarkable sale

Antarctic Expedition memorial plaque

Rare piece of Polar memorabilia flies above estimate at Ipswich auction

01 October 2021

A fine lot of Polar memorabilia surfaced at Lockdales in Ipswich. It came by descent from William Lashly (1867-1940), chief stoker during the ill-fated Terra Nova expedition to Antartica in 1911-12.

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