Coins

Since ancient times, rulers and governments have produced coins to establish a standardised form of exchange for their citizens. With these items often embodying the history of their age, antique coins remains a highly collectable field.

Coins often appear in mixed auctions but there are also specialist auction houses operating in this field.


A lot of Gaul

04 March 2002

PARIS: The whole history of French coins from Gaulish times to the present was covered by the Jean Vinchon (10.764% buyer’s premium) sale in Paris on November 6. Because it was a single collection rather than the random assemblage that chance had brought across the counter there were many choice examples on offer.

Big Apple, huge price

18 February 2002

USA: The annual general sale of good quality classical coins (446 lots) hosted by the triumvirate of Baldwins (London), Markov (New York) and M&M (Washington DC) took place in the Big Apple on January 17.

Early dirham catches the word

13 December 2001

It is not usually understood that the prophet Mohammed did not actually ban images. This came about some 60 years after his death. In very late AH77 (696AD) the then caliph instituted an epigraphic gold coinage: the dinar (cf. Latin: denarius).

Texas sale is $7.7m big

28 November 2001

AUCTIONEERS Sotheby’s (20/15/10% buyer’s premium) combined with New York dealers Stacks to auction the Dallas Bank collection of United States coins on October 29-30.

Pest is a blessing in disguise

16 November 2001

Of greater general interest was Baldwin’s sale of Ancient and Modern coins that occupied October 9. There were 1403 lots looking for a new owner. This included the 322 lots devoted to the working library of the late Patrick Finn.

Turning Japanese in Hong Kong

31 August 2001

The annual Hong-Kong coin sale presided over by Baldwin-Ma-Gillio-Monetarium is always a big draw. This one, number 33, including the semi-annual sales at Singapore, is scheduled for August 30.

Cupro-nickel coins and crowns…

26 July 2001

FRIDAY 13th proved a long day at Glendining’s (15 per cent buyer’s premium) with 735 lots – not that this was unlucky. It was, as usual, a general sale but there is plenty of general interest to write about.

No b-side to holy see side

27 June 2001

UK: ONE of the more interesting features of the last sale at Sotheby’s (10 per cent buyer’s premium) on May 2 and 3 was the collection of German medieval coins formed by Beat Konrad Graf Reuttner von Weyl (d. 1969). This dispersal is interesting on two counts.

Apollo lands £156,000 to head 'finest’ post-war sale

16 June 2001

SWITZERLAND: THE sale of Classical Greek coins held at Leu, Zurich (15 per cent buyer’s premium) on May 16 was billed as the finest at least since WWII. This was hardly modest, but it certainly was not far from the truth. The sale coins were culled from the best sales of exactly the last four decades. Not only this but the coins were invariably among the finest specimens available during this time and many of them had provenances going back a lot further.

Coin coup for the Fitzwilliam

23 April 2001

UK: THE Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge is celebrating a £425,000 Lottery windfall that has helped it acquire a stunning coin collection.

Shuttlewood collection ‘finest since the 1950s’

17 April 2001

UK: MARCH was a busy month in London and successful with it. On the 15th, Spink (15 per cent buyer’s premium) sold the definitive collection of Tudor silver coins formed over several decades by Roger Shuttlewood.

E is for Eboracum … and V is Victorious

02 April 2001

The catalogue for the Dix Noonan Webb sale of March 21 makes known a recent discovery before it gets into the learned journals. It is an incidental use of sale catalogues that these things can be given prompt announcement. This is the nice example of a Charles I half-crown struck at York.

Testone of François I

02 April 2001

Slightly worn, as they usually come, but with a good portrait, this testone of François I (1515-47 – 28mm diam) sold for E170 (£105).

Celtic coins and aureus

19 March 2001

In a recent issue some attempt was made to get away from only reporting past auction sales by noting coins from trade fixed price lists. To develop this theme further we return to auction sales but with a difference, this time to preview a few lots from Spink’s sale of April 11 in London.

The stamp of history…

19 March 2001

EIRE: WHYTES of Dublin held their spring coin sale on February 23. Their regular sale results are very useful for gauging the market in Irish material and with the enhancement of the Irish economy in recent years there is much interest in it. This is made manifest by the fact that most of the buyers reported by Whytes are resident in Ireland.

Lighting up a Gauloise

19 March 2001

FRANCE: THE largest hoard ever of gold Celtic coins – the French call them Gauloise – is being offered at auction in Paris on March 27. The expert is Alain Weil (54 rue de Richelieu). There are 145 of them and they were issued by the Gaulish tribes of the Cenomanes, who bequeathed their name to present-day le Mans, and the Venetes who dominated the area round Vannes on the south coast of Brittany.

Nicholas II rouble and a silver denarius

19 March 2001

In a recent issue some attempt was made to get away from only reporting past auction sales by noting coins from trade fixed price lists. To develop this theme further we return to auction sales but with a difference, this time to preview a few lots from Spink’s sale of April 11 in London.

Weaving a rich tapestry

05 March 2001

SWITZERLAND: ABOUT 75 people filled the room at the Tkalec sale of Greek and Roman coins on February 19. For collectors of useless information (and aren’t we all?) I can report that the T of Tkalec is not pronounced and that the name is the old Croat equivalent of ‘Weaver’.

New material? Please, sir, we want some Mohur…

19 February 2001

UK: THE lack of new and interesting material reported elsewhere in the ‘Cumberland’ fair report was reflected in Glendining’s first sale of this year on February 1. There was nothing there which is not relatively easy to find. It is perhaps because of this that it is worth reporting on the latest auction prices of some of the more usual coins.

Bonhams to close their coin department

15 May 2000

UK: BONHAMS have announced that they will close their coin and medal department following their July 18 sale, whose main feature is a collection of minor Roman and Byzantine coins.

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