Bonhams is one of the world’s oldest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. Founded in 1793, it specialises in areas such as fine art, jewellery, cars and private collections. Bonhams was merged with Brooks, a specialist auctioneer in 2000, and Phillips Son & Neale not long after. US auctioneers Butterfields joined the group in 2002.

Bonhams is privately owned with offices around the world and major salerooms in the US, Europe and Asia.


Memories of infamous Lord Lucan spurred by London auction of Lady Lucan collection

21 August 2018

The nickname ‘Lucky’ Lucan seems a strange one seeing as it refers to the infamous 7th Earl of Lucan who disappeared in 1974, shortly after the attempted murder of his, by then, estranged wife and the murder of the nanny of their children, Sandra Rivett.


Leo Kaplan sale tests transatlantic ceramics taste

20 August 2018

After 49 years of trading in Manhattan, ceramics and glass dealer Leo Kaplan Ltd closed its doors earlier this year.


‘Business as usual’ as China tariff looms

20 August 2018

The US-China trade row provides an unwelcome distraction to the September edition of New York’s 'Asian Art Week' (AAW).


Pistol and war hammer highlight at Bonhams

06 August 2018

A rare and early combination of a war hammer and pistol was a highlight of the Bonhams (25/12.5% buyer’s premium) sale in Knightsbridge on May 23, selling for £24,000.


Cased Colt is top lot in San Francisco sale

06 August 2018

The top lot at Bonhams (25/12.5% buyer’s premium) in San Francisco on June 19 was an exceptional cased example of a specially engraved Colt 1851 percussion revolver with shoulder stock.


Sketches and scraps make hit albums

06 August 2018

Two albums of 19th century watercolours and drawings produced unexpected results in summer sales.

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Star Wars poster auction record and James Bond and Beatles lots underline entertainment memorabilia demand

01 August 2018

A rare Star Wars concept poster printed for The Empire Strikes Back sold on July 29 for a premium-inclusive $26,400 (£20,150) at Heritage Auctions, setting a world record as the most expensive movie poster from the space opera ever sold at auction.

Sir Francis Drake wart and all portrait fetches £290,000 at auction

23 July 2018

An early Anglo-Dutch portrait of the swashbuckling English sea captain Sir Francis Drake topped Bonhams’ Old Master paintings sale on July 4 in New Bond Street. It sold for £290,000, just below its juicy £300,000-500,000 guide.

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Movers and shakers: the latest arts and antiques appointments

20 July 2018

Our latest look at new roles in the art and antiques trade.


Archaeological dig at the battlefield of Waterloo wins support from Bonhams

16 July 2018

Auction house Bonhams is sponsoring Waterloo Uncovered, an archaeological dig at the battlefield of Waterloo.


London’s slice of Marly Rouge

16 July 2018

Bonhams’ (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) main summer sale of European ceramics took place at its Bond Street rooms on July 5. On offer were 245 lots which raised a hammer total of just under £600,000, with a 62% take-up.


Donne with George Eliot extra

16 July 2018

A copy of the posthumously published, 1633 first edition of John Donne’s Poems in a neatly rebacked but contemporary sheep binding is a desirable volume in itself.


How to create Harry Potter price magic

16 July 2018

There were two 1997, first-impression copies of JK Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in the June 21 sale held by Bonhams.


Ancient battlegrounds and new antiquities challenges

16 July 2018

A hint of defiance was in the air during the latest round of London antiquities sales held at Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Bonhams (25/20/12.5-12.9% buyer’s premium).


Dark Lord and Skipperera star in niche market

09 July 2018

As the market develops, some of the ‘secondary’ niche Swiss brands have entered the mainstream collecting arena. The Bonhams (25% buyer’s premium) Fine Watches and Wristwatches sale on June 20 offered a range of 46 Heuers from a single-owner private collection.


Top Mod Brits show global appeal

09 July 2018

More than £47m of Modern British art changed hands in a bumper series held in London, as buyers competed fiercely for blue-chip pieces and lots offering best value.


Mixed auction results as £4.6m Rubens tops Old Masters series

09 July 2018

The July Old Master auctions in London were a mixed affair with the lack of blockbuster lots meaning the overall total was down on the levels of the last two years.


Darwin distressed – but not dismissed

09 July 2018

Two 1859 firsts of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species…, neither in what could be called good condition, made very strong prices in recent weeks. This is a book nowadays so desirable that such shortcomings can be overlooked.


Shakespeare, fables and a fantastic codebook result

25 June 2018

The earliest publication in any form of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar came with its inclusion as part of the 1623 First Folio, and in a recent US sale a bound set of the 22pp that it occupied in that great work prompted a six-figure bid.


Second World War German codebook breaks into six figures

25 June 2018

For many years now, German Enigma code machines have been making big, sums at auction, but in the Bonhams New York June 12 sale a slim codebook relating to their use also prompted a much, much higher than expected and six-figure bid.