Greek, Roman, Egyptian & Other Antiquities

The antiquities market comprises artefacts and works of art made by ancient civilisations including statues, coins, jewellery and arms and armour.

Provenance is one of the most important considerations when trading in this sector as there is a long history of looting from archaeological sites.

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BRAFA 2020: Eight stands that caught our eye

30 January 2020

BRAFA art fair in Brussels opened to the public earlier this week following several private views that kicked-off the event.

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Stolen Afghan sculpture to return home after being spotted at UK auction

21 January 2020

An Afghan limestone sculpture believed to have been stolen during the Afghan civil war (1992-94), when Kabul was besieged, surfaced at an auction house in the UK last year.

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British Museum is third time lucky to buy 1000-year-old seal matrix

23 December 2019

A rare Saxon walrus ivory seal matrix will go back on display in the British Museum – after the institution missed out on buying the object twice before.

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Ring sheds light on Jewish soldiers in Roman army

23 December 2019

A Roman bronze ring offered for sale by Pax Romana (15% buyer’s premium) in London on November 24 appears to shed light on a little known aspect of the imperial army: the contribution of Jewish soldiers.

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The changing face of antiquities

23 December 2019

Given the growing number of claims made by national governments and heritage authorities when it comes to the antiquities sector, 2020 looks set to be another year of further controversies. Here, lawyer Fred Clark, an associate in Boodle Hatfield LLP’s art team, surveys the legal landscape of the ancient art market and looks ahead to what may well become a more regulated world.

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Greco-Roman marble torso of Aphrodite draws admirers in West Sussex

09 December 2019

Adding a classical touch to a highly successful five-day sale at West Sussex auction house Bellmans (22% buyer’s premium) was a 1st century AD Greco-Roman marble lower torso of Aphrodite.

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Chinese mantel clock, Rembrandt etching and Roman-Jewish bronze ring – five auction highlights that caught bidders’ eyes

29 November 2019

ATG’s selection of hammer highlights this week includes a rare Roman-Jewish bronze ring that made over 30-times estimate.

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Antiquities stolen from Afghanistan returned with help of British Museum and Met police’s Art and Antiques Unit

12 November 2019

Sculptures of Buddha dating from the 4th-6th centuries smuggled out of Afghanistan nearly 20 years ago have finally been returned to the country’s national museum.

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Sculpture of Emperor Hadrian reigns supreme in Christie's Classic Week

04 November 2019

Christie’s latest ‘Classic week’ in New York raised a premium-inclusive $59.9m (£46.8m) from nine separate sales.

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Rare Islamic gold dinar sets joint record at auction

25 October 2019

A rare Umayyad gold dinar dated 105AH (723AD) equalled the auction record for an Islamic coin when it was hammered down at £3.1m at Morton & Eden.

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TEFAF New York Fall widens timeline for fourth edition

14 October 2019

Booth collaborations at TEFAF New York Fall encourage cross-collecting by visitors

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Egyptian head brings smiles at Hartleys

30 September 2019

After the Hartleys (17.5% buyer’s premium) September 4 sale, auctioneer Andrew Hartley admitted: “Furniture did not perform as it was hoped from tiny chinks of daylight discernible in the last few months.”

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British fund manager consigns Roman statue of Emperor Hadrian to Christie’s

25 September 2019

A Roman sculpture of the Emperor Hadrian billed as “one of the finest ancient statues from the Grand Tour era of collecting” has been consigned to Christie’s by British investment manager Christian Levett.

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Rare Roman Solidus coin found in Somerset field bought by European collector

18 September 2019

A rare Roman gold coin of the Emperor Constantine I found by a metal detectorist in a field in Somerset was hammered down at £16,000 (plus 24% buyer’s premium) at Dix Noonan Webb.

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Greek marble ‘wedding present’ returned to Munich museum

18 September 2019

A Hellenistic marble stele that was received as a wedding present in the 1950s has been returned to a museum in Germany after an investigation by antiquities dealers and an Oxford scholar.

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Going for bust with a £96,000 bid in Essex auction

16 September 2019

This Italian marble bust of an emperor, catalogued as 17th century after the antique, provided a moment of saleroom drama at Sworders’ Fine Interiors auction in Stansted on September 10.

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Hadrianic Dionysos head offered at Cottone’s auction

16 September 2019

One of the highlights of Cottone’s sale in Geneseo, New York, on September 28 will be this marble head of Dionysos, a Roman copy of a late classical (4th century BC) Greek archetype.

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Rare late Anglo-Saxon and early Norman conquest coin hoard discovered in Somerset valued at £4m

29 August 2019

A Bath museum hopes to acquire a rare hoard of coins found in a Chew Valley field that could be valued at £4m.

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Roman mask leads antiquities parade

26 August 2019

This copper-alloy Roman mask will be offered for sale on September 3 by TimeLine Auctions in London, estimated at £80,000-100,000.

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Mask ‘matches Crosby Garrett find’

26 August 2019

Roman relic up for auction is believed to be from same workshop as famous helmet.

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