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.

Roman mosaic

French museum buys ancient mosaic from auction in Monaco

02 August 2017

An example of a Gallo-Roman mosaic floor from around 150-200AD that would have decorated the floor of a wealthy villa in Vienne in Southern France, has just been acquired by the city’s museum from an auction in Monaco.

Rijksmuseum van Oudheden bronze dirk

Ancient ‘peat bog’ bronze sword sells to Dutch museum at Christie’s

24 July 2017

A museum in The Netherlands has bought a 3000-year-old ceremonial sword at a Christie’s auction. It had been found around 120 years ago in a peat bog.

cuneiform tablets

US retailer fined after seizure of illegally imported cultural property

10 July 2017

A large high street chain in the US has been fined $3m in connection with the purchase and importing of a large number of ancient Iraqi artefacts.


Reflections on the £390,000 ‘perfect storm’

10 July 2017

A moment of good old-fashioned saleroom drama emerged at Christie’s antiquities sale on July 5 when an Etruscan bronze mirror, estimated at £10,000-15,000, sold at £390,000 (plus 25/20/12% buyer’s premium). The buyer was a European institution.

Europe ‘not a haven’ for ancient loot says global trade body

26 June 2017

The global trade body for antiquities dealers has insisted that Europe does not provide a ready market for looted artefacts from conflict zones.


Ancient pottery under the spotlight

26 June 2017

Ancient pottery is the most abundant and diverse collecting field to have survived from antiquity. As the first synthetic material created by humans, it spans the entire ancient world, encompassing a wide variety of styles, shapes and colours. From functional household objects to highly prized ceremonial pieces, pottery appeals to both entry level collectors and seasoned buyers. Here ATG puts ancient pottery in the spotlight with a selection of highlights coming up at auctions, fairs and galleries in London this summer.


Auction previews - Egyptian and Greek antiquities

26 June 2017

ATG previews a couple of upcoming lots at London auctions.


The fresh face of antiquity

26 June 2017

The antiquities trade’s packed summer schedule got off to a bright start at Sotheby’s (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) in London. The ancient art sale was the second to be held since the auction house reopened its London unit in 2016. Over the last two decades, Sotheby’s had sold ancient art through its New York saleroom only.


Aphrodite finds love from bidders in west London

26 June 2017

Catalogued as ‘after the antique’, this marble figure of Aphrodite was the unexpected star of Chiswick Auctions’ June 14 sale of antiquities and tribal art in London.


Interview: How to survive in a climate of fear

26 June 2017

‘How Western Art Collectors are Helping to Fund Isis’ (Guardian), ‘Broken System Allows Isis to Profit from Looted Antiquities’ (New York Times), ‘How Antiquities are Funding Terrorism’ (Financial Times). In 2015, news of looting and the destruction of ancient sites in the Middle East by the fanatical Islamic terrorists Isis began to gain worldwide attention.


Mayfair gallery exhibition links antiquities to contemporary art

26 June 2017

Mixing ancient and new is all the rage. The contemporary art boom has drawn new faces into the antiquities market, changing the way the trade think and display ancient art.


New Charles Ede directors make a past perfect pair

26 June 2017

Charles Ede has bowed out of this week’s Masterpiece London in favour of the trio of TEFAFs. ATG meets two of the directors to find out how a synthesis of ancient and modern can benefit this long-standing family firm.


Roman marble busts head to auction

26 June 2017

“I have gazed upon the face of Agamemnon”. Arguably the most famous words in archaeological history, they were supposedly uttered by German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann in 1876 as he unearthed a gold mask at Mycenae. Some 140 years later, portraits from antiquity remain powerful reminders of our ancient past.


Krater makes impact on Macclesfield auction

30 May 2017

An age away from the controversy, skulduggery and sky-high prices that have too often characterised the antiquities market of late, the world of the quiet academic’s study came to the Macclesfield rooms of Adam Partridge (15% buyer’s premium) on April 6-7.


Marble bust of Trajan at Chiswick Auctions

30 May 2017

Bloodthirsty, ruthless and mad – Roman emperors have often been perceived as highly unsavoury individuals.

WEB ancient marbles A 16-5-17.jpg

Roman statues used for Jamaican toga parties now in London auction

16 May 2017

Fancy holding ‘Ides of March’ toga parties in your luxury Jamaican villa with original Roman statues dotted around the swimming pool for the authentic touch? American couple Douglas and Diene Cooper made that fantasy reality.


Turkey appeals against stargazer sale

08 May 2017

Last week’s spectacular $14.5m sale of an ancient ‘stargazer’ idol has been placed in doubt after the Turkish government challenged Christie’s right to sell it.

Anatolian marble Kiliya stargazer

Ancient ‘stargazer’ marble figure leads Christie’s New York auction

24 March 2017

An ancient Anatolian marble figure dating to the third millennium BC will lead the lots on offer at Christie’s upcoming ‘Exceptional’ sale in New York on April 28.

Roman helmet

Carlisle museum welcomes back £2m Crosby Garrett Roman helmet

16 March 2017

A major British archaeological find is to return to a Carlisle museum for a new show on Hadrian’s Cavalry.


Recovering Egyptian artefacts from overseas is not in Egypt's favour, says its former antiquities minister

07 March 2017

Egypt’s former antiquities minister Mamdouh al-Damaty has called for a change of policy relating to Egyptian artefacts traded abroad.