Bonhams

Bonhams is an auction house with headquarters in the UK. It operates two London salerooms as well as others in Edinburgh, New York, Los Angeles, and Hong Kong.

In 2000, Bonhams was merged with Brooks, a specialist Classic Car auctioneer, and Phillips Son & Neale not long after. US auctioneers Butterfields joined the group in 2002.

In September 2018, chairman Robert Brooks stepped down after selling the company to private equity group Epiris.


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Early birds catch bidders’ eye

19 August 2019

Lots offered towards the start of sales at the same auction house prove successful.

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Horace taken to new heights by Captain Cook notes

19 August 2019

The reason that an otherwise unexceptional 1737 English language edition of Horace’s 'Odes, Satyrs and Epistles' – lacking a portrait and three text pages – sold for the substantial sum of £50,000 in the Bonhams (27.5/25/20/13.9%) sale on June 26 is to be found on the front endpaper notes shown below.

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Pick of the pistol hammer highs

12 August 2019

Fine sets of pistols, preferably nicely cased, have long been the mainstay of London arms and armour sales. This season’s crop were not as plentiful nor so eagerly contested as we sometimes see, but there were some gems on offer and a selection of them are illustrated here.

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Stopping power to halt an angry tiger

12 August 2019

In the days of the British Raj there was no shortage of would-be shikaris hoping to bag a tiger in India. At the same time plenty of London gunsmiths were ready to supply them with all the fire-power they could persuade them to buy.

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Summer sale quest for first Harry Potter editions

12 August 2019

Copies of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone impressed in several summer sales.

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Household Cavalry blades in demand

12 August 2019

The collecting of English military swords is a science in itself.

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Son of a slave paints saintly image

05 August 2019

While the vast majority of works at Old Master sales are by European artists, an unusual offering at Bonhams’ sale on July 3 was a Latin American work by a painter with Afro-Caribbean ancestry.

Meissen bust of Karl Albrecht, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII

Meissen bust of Holy Roman Emperor sold to Bavarian museum at Bonhams’ auction

15 July 2019

The Bavarian National Museum in Munich has purchased this sculptural bust in white Meissen porcelain of Karl Albrecht, the Elector of Bavaria and also Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII (1697-1745).

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Masterpieces to a Rothschild’s taste tempt buyers during a packed London sales week

08 July 2019

The 52-lot auction of furniture, paintings and works of art collected by members of the Rothschild family was among the most animated during a packed week of London showpiece sales.

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Records fall in Mod Brit sales despite a blue-chip dip

08 July 2019

After a bullish 2018 for the major Modern British art sales in London – during which Christie’s posted its strongest evening sale to date – results from the first ‘Mod Brit’ series of 2019 looked a little flat by comparison.

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Eric Gill head and torso makes waves at Bonhams

08 July 2019

Much of the pre-sale publicity from Bonhams’ June 15 Mod Brit focused on Eric Gill’s (1882-1942) Girl with a Comb in her Hair (1928) – a market-fresh carved head and torso valued at £200,000-300,000 and admired for its unusual pose and luxuriant wavy hair.

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Jewels in July – five places to see dazzling jewels this month

06 July 2019

From Cartier rings at auction in Knightsbridge and talks over wine at the Goldsmiths’ Hall to a guided tour of Syon Park, find out about the latest jewellery-related events this month.

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Tompion ‘Q Clock’ takes £1.6m in London at Bonhams auction

24 June 2019

A clock made for King William and Queen Mary by Thomas Tompion (1639-1713) was hammered down for £1.6m atThe Clive Collection of Exceptional Clockssale on June 19 at Bonhams.

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‘Chameleon’ artist revealed in London

24 June 2019

With an infamous lack of a ‘signature’ look, Northern Irish painter Colin Middleton (1910-83) is something of an art historical chameleon.

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Origin of Species takes record result in US sale

24 June 2019

Uncut and partially unopened, a truly exceptional presentation copy of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species… sold for a record $400,000 (£316,353) in a recent US sale.

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Capital gains: The wider choice available in the London auction scene

19 June 2019

As the battle for the ‘middle market’ heats up, the London auction scene today offers visitors a wider choice of items to buy and more places to bid for them.

Toby jug

Lord Mackintosh’s viola player is toast of Toby jug collection at Bonhams

12 June 2019

Late Spring or early summer is a traditional slot in the London auction schedule for Bonhams’ ceramics and glass sales. The latest, devoted to glass and British ceramics, took place in the firm’s Knightsbridge rooms last week.

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Swansea ice pail takes a cool £38,000 result

10 June 2019

An impressive 8in (20cm) high ice pail, cover and liner made what is thought to be a record auction result for Swansea porcelain when it sold for £38,000 hammer at Bonhams in Knightsbridge on June 5.

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Selective Russian auction series maintains capacity to wow

10 June 2019

The latest week of Russian art auctions in London generated £35.8m including premium, the highest total for a June series in this category since 2014.

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