Lyon & Turnbull

Edinburgh auction house Lyon & Turnbull has been operating since 1826 in Scotland. The company specialises in fine art, jewellery and antiques.

They hold about 30 auctions a year including dedicated sales such as Scottish paintings, European and British paintings, furniture, silver, books and furniture.

In 2000 the business formed a marketing alliance with US auctioneers Freeman's of Philadelphia.


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Inscribed first edition of Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone makes £100,000

22 June 2020

One of the few first-edition copies of 'Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone' inscribed and signed by JK Rowling has sold at Lyon & Turnbull in Edinburgh for £100,000 (plus 25% premium).

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Far Eastern works from Earls of Crawford and Balcarres lift auction North of the Border

01 June 2020

Scotland’s key role in the 18th and 19th century China trade has a legacy. Some of the nation’s country houses remain the repository of important Far Eastern works of art.

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Men of letters: Dickens and Burns light up works on paper parade

25 May 2020

Two outstanding works on paper – a letter by Robert Burns and a page from the manuscript for Charles Dickens’ 'Pickwick Papers' – headline the June offerings across the field of books, maps and prints.

Paul Nash drawing

Paul Nash drawing and a model train among four lots to watch at auction this week

25 May 2020

With estimates from £3000-60,000 here are four previews of upcoming items this week.

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Antiquities get ahead of the rest

25 May 2020

Among the top-estimated lots at the Lyon & Turnbull (25% buyer’s premium) sale of African & Oceanic Art, Antiquities and Natural History in Edinburgh on May 5 was a hammered bronze Apulo-Corinthian helmet from southern Italy, c.350-500BC.

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Scottish country house supplies £36,000 vase

18 May 2020

A Beijing enamel vase from a Scottish country house topped the Asian art sale held ‘behind closed doors’ by Lyon & Turnbull (25% buyer’s premium).

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Auction previews: issue 2443

18 May 2020

The auction calendar has been much changed by Covid 19 restrictions. However, as indicated by these lots offered for sale, an increasing number of auction houses are transacting safely behind closed doors holding timed sales or ‘live online’ sales with bids taken via bidding platforms such as thesaleroom.com or over the phone. Typically purchases can either be collected safely and couriered, or stored by the auction house until the current government guidance is lifted. With auction houses set to be able to be reopen premises to the public from June 1, more and more sales are now being added to the auction calendar.

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Ancient Greek helmet and Martin Brothers’ vase are among four lots to watch at auction this week

04 May 2020

With estimates from £50-9000 here are four previews of upcoming items this week.

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Auction house reports boost for less familiar names as bidders scan catalogues in detail

04 May 2020

One of the side-effects for the art market of being in a lockdown is that people have more time to discover works that they might have otherwise missed or overlooked.

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Bellany results remain buoyant

04 May 2020

Works by the prolific John Bellany (1942-2013) appear regularly at auction, with small drawings often available for hundreds of pounds, but the larger and vigorously coloured figurative oils generally make many thousands.

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Affordable art: Three works sold for under £800 including a Brangwyn and Urushibara woodcut

20 April 2020

Three modestly valued works selling at regional sales including a Brangwyn and Urushibara woodcut

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Lyon & Turnbull show how live performances create a show with a buzz

13 April 2020

Although premises are closed, online selling can help to create a sale day sense of excitement

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Cat’s out of the bag – May emerges from behind the Morris curtain

06 April 2020

Although often overshadowed by her famous father William, May Morris (1862-1938) was herself an important figure in the British Arts & Crafts movement.

Gavin Strang of Lyon and Turnbull

“The longest time I have ever spent on the rostrum” – Lyon & Turnbull’s live online sale delivers results

03 April 2020

Lyon & Turnbull held a remarkably successful sale of Decorative Arts on April 1 – the firm’s first using the ‘live online’ format.

May Morris embroidery

Vendors support Lyon & Turnbull’s move to sell online

27 March 2020

The Edinburgh and London auction house Lyon & Turnbull is to press ahead with its two April sales as ‘live online only’ events. The firm’s sales of Decorative Arts: Design since 1860 (April 1) and Contemporary & Post-War Art (April 16) will feature auctioneer Gavin Strang on the rostrum in Edinburgh but no one else in the room.

Shells sell in Edinburgh

23 March 2020

Containing some 600 hand-coloured engraved plates, a set of Sowerby and De Carle’s 'The Mineral Conchology of Great Britain…' of 1812-29 was just another of the many attraction in a sale last month held by Lyon & Turnbull.

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Notorious female pirates inspired later authors

09 March 2020

Shown below is a plate from A General History of the Robberies and Murders of the most Notorious Pyrates… sold at Lyon & Turnbull (25% buyer’s premium) on February 19

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Affordable art: Three works sold for under £1000 including a typical Trevor Grimshaw work

02 March 2020

Three modestly valued works selling at regional sales including a Trevor Grimshaw steam train.

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Bell to announce ships in Ceylon stands proud in Scotland

02 March 2020

This 14in (25cm) diameter bronze bell shown here bears the insignia of the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (the Dutch East India Company or VOC), the date 1747 and the name Jaffanapatnam. It is suspended in a wrought iron frame and mounted to a large stone mill wheel.

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Pick of the week: 'Oldest accurate map of coastal Scotland' becomes auction trailblazer

24 February 2020

'La Navigation du Roy d’Ecosse' by the French cartographer Nicolas de Nicolay (1517-83) is said to be the oldest accurate map of coastal Scotland.

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