1. Blue glass tankard
Estimated at £30-50 this 6in (15cm) high blue glass tankard sold for £6500 (plus buyer’s premium) at Richard Winterton, Lichfield, December 12. The enamelled decoration of two greyhounds chasing a fox includes the prominent date 1599. It was in generally good condition, save some overpainting to lost enamels and an area to the rim that may have been ground down, prompting the auctioneers to believe it was a historicist piece from the 19th century. In fact bidders were confident it was period and probably made in southern Germany. Similar to the form assumed by many Rhinish saltglaze jugs of the period, enamelled decoration such as this appears to many Germany glass vessels from 16th and 17th centuries.
2. Marine painting
As a commercial selling category, Victorian marine paintings have suffered from changing fashion. However, there is still decent money around for a good restful picture – such as Shipping Becalmed by Henry Redmore (1820-87) sold via thesalerooom.com at David Duggleby in Scarborough on December 7 for £13,800 (plus buyer’s premium). The 2ft x 3ft (60 x 90cm) oil in a giltwood frame, include multiple sailing vessels at anchor and plenty of well-observed detail – including a wooden buoy that bears the artist’s signature and the date 1855. Many of Redmore's works depict shipping in the Humber estuary but he also he travelled to Holland – perhaps the location of this scene with its windmill in the distance.
3. Doulton Lambeth vase by Hannah and Florence Barlow
This otherwise typical late 19th century Doulton Lambeth vase by Hannah and Florence Barlow is thought to be the only one known decorated with monkeys. Standing 13in (34cm) high, it combines two sgraffito panels of seated monkeys (by Hannah Barlow) between pate-sur-pate birds and flowers decorated by sister Florence. On December 8, Worcestershire firm Kingham & Orme sold it at the top estimate of £6500 (plus buyer’s premium) to a private collector.
4. RAF Spitfire cockpit instrument panel
Laidlaw Auctioneers in Carlisle sold the contents of a Kent private aviation museum on December 7. Multi-estimate bids were received for a series of Second World War archaeological finds and relics – including this battered RAF Spitfire cockpit instrument panel sold via thesalerooom.com for £8800 (plus buyer’s premium).
5. Modernist slate fireplace
This modernist slate fireplace is one of two created by the Russian-born Constructive sculptor and painter Naum Gabo (1890-1977) while living in Cornwall in 1946. The two identical fireplaces were made for a newly-built house in Redruth using slate from the Polyphant Quarries at Delabole near Tintagel. Gabo emigrated to the United States in 1946 so this would have been amongst the last of his works created in Cornwall. Offered by David Lay in Penzance on December 6, it sold for £2900 (plus buyer’s premium).