Complete but composite suit of Maximillian armour – £60,000.

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This was a well-provenanced composite German suit in the fluted style generally known as Maximillian, largely dating to c.1520.

Very little armour of this age comes to us totally intact. Here it was noted that the arms were not a pair and that the tassets were later or associated, but with a provenance that might have begun at the Radziwill Armoury at Schloss Nieswicz and included the Hurst Collection and the Royal Armouries, it sold in London for £60,000.

Swords come into play

Bonhams also had some of the best swords on offer in this November 30 auction, selling a well-preserved Viking blade of the 9th or 10th century for £14,000 and, from about a thousand years later, a rare Caucasian sabre with colourful enamelled decoration to the hilt and scabbard, for £16,000.

Pistols make their mark

Inevitably, pistols also made their mark. The magical name of Manton featured twice among the main attractions. A handsome pair of cased flintlock duelling pistols by John Manton, c.1793, made £12,000, while a pair of equally fine cased percussion target pistols from a later generation of the firm, c.1836, nicely carved and engraved and in very crisp condition, sold for £20,000.

The best of the Continental pistols was a pair of mid-19th century Bohemian percussion target pistols made by the eminent Prague gunsmith Lebada, in a sumptuous fitted case with accessories, at £11,750.