John Constable’s drawing of a tree overhanging a stream near East Bergholt, Suffolk, comes for sale at Halls of Shrewsbury on December 7 with an estimate of £8000-12,000.
Dated April 20, 1821, this was the same day he wrote a detailed letter to his wife Maria in Hampstead describing the countryside of East Bergholt, his impression of some hot cross buns purchased in London and a visit to the local squire, Edward Godfrey.
The tree study, measuring just 4½ x 3½in (12 x 9cm), was once in the Constable collection of Dr HAC Gregory and formed part of both the Wildenstein Constable centenary exhibition in 1937 and the Arts Council exhibition of the artist’s works in 1949. It was inherited from a collector who bought it at London dealers Agnew’s in 1979.
A collection of medals and militaria from Devon is going under the hammer in Sherborne, Dorset, in Charterhouse’s December 1-2 Collectors auction.
It includes a group of First World War bronze death plaques including one to Frederick Stayton Moses, a soldier who was killed in action on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, July 1, 1916, which is estimated at £200-400.
Bonhams’ London Jewels sale on December 1, features this gemstone and hardstone bust of Mars by gifted Victorian cameo engraver Wilhelm Schmidt (1845-1938). It is offered with an estimate of £70,000-100,000.
Schmidt typically sold his work for use in ornamental jewels by firms such as John Brodgen, Tiffany & Co, Child & Child, Giuliano, and Marcus & Co. This c.1890 bust, sculpted from a single boulder opal using a technique which Schmidt pioneered in 1874, is thought to be the only fully signed piece known to exist.
This silverpoint Study of a Cat by Cedric Morris (1889-1982) signed and dated 1924 was gifted to the vendor by the artist. It is estimated at £800-1200 at the sale of Modern Art & Design at Mallams Oxford on December 7.
Charles Brown (1749-95) and his brother William were gem-workers, both exhibiting at the Royal Academy. From 1786-95 they received numerous commissions from the court of Catherine II, Empress of Russia.
Approximately two hundred cameos and intaglios remain in the Hermitage, St Petersburg. The seal pictured here, on offer at Ilkley saleroom Hartleys on December 7, is one of two sold directly to Catherine. Hartleys says ‘an outside expert has suggested that this may be the original stone and the one in the Hermitage was the second to be carved’.
It is a cornelian oval seal, intaglio carved with George Stubbs’ (1724-1806) famous work Horse Frightened by a Lion (1770), and is signed in the stone C. Brown F. In a gold scroll mount with plain frame, 4 x 3cm overall, it has been owned by a private family for at least four generations – but found by a valuer ‘in a biscuit tin with assorted bits and bobs, so mucky you could hardly tell what it was’.
The Design since 1860 sale at Roseberys London on December 7 includes a RW Martin & Brothers double-sided character jug that comes with some remarkable documentation.
The 6in (15cm) jug, dated 1903, comes for sale by descent from Australian George Swinburne who purchased it directly from the studio at Southall in 1914 through his agent, Rev WG Beardmore.
Alongside two early 20th century Martin Bros brochures is a letter from Beardmore to dated June 26, 1914 in which he laments recent changes at the Martin studio and the recent closure of its Holborn shop.
He writes: “They are very unworldly and unpractical men in relation to business. Moreover, two of the brothers are now dead. One died very suddenly; and unfortunately with him died some of the most important secrets of the production. The eldest one (Wallace) is fairly well but getting old. He is the one who makes the face jugs. But I fear they will never again do work equal to that of the former days.”
This rare hollowcast metal figure of George VI on the Coronation chair was made by Johillco for the 1937 coronation. In its original box, it has a guide of £200-300 as part of the sale of toy soldiers at C&T in Kenardington, Kent, on December 7.
The sale of Important Irish Art at Adam’s in Dublin on December 7 includes this market-fresh work by Jack Butler Yeats (1871-1957). The Duet, depicting two men singing as they wade waist deep in a choppy sea, was purchased by the owner’s father at Miss Morris’ Gallery, Clonmel, in 1945, the year it was painted.
The oil on board measuring 9 x 14in (23 x 35cm) is estimated at €70,000-100,000.
This three-quarter-length portrait of James Butler, the 1st Duke of Ormonde (1610-88), in Garter, is catalogued as Sir Peter Lely and Studio.
The oil on canvas, (1.34 x 1.07m) is estimated at £15,000-25,000 at Oxfordshire saleroom Jacobs & Hunt on December 2.
The painting bears a plaque inscribed Thynne Heirloom: it sold as Lot 49 in The Thynne Heirloom auction at Christie’s on May 1, 1911, where it fetched £42.
The Butlers were one of the principal families of Anglo-Norman settlers to survive in Ireland from the Middle Ages. However, the first Duke of Ormonde broke with the Catholicism of his forebears to become one of the most significant statesmen and soldiers in the service of King Charles I in his campaign against the Irish uprising that preceded the English Civil War.
Ormonde remained loyal to the Stuarts throughout his life despite falling in and out of favour. He was elevated to the Irish dukedom of Ormonde in 1661.
Lancaster Rear Gunner Warrant Officer Victor Arthur Roe was killed in action on a raid to Chemnitz, carrying out his 98th operational sortie on March 5-6, 1945, as part of the elite Pathfinder Force. He was just 21 years old.
His Second World War CGM (Conspicuous Gallantry Medal) and ‘Immediate’ DFM (Distinguished Flying Medal) group of five will be offered by Noonans on December 7. Consigned by Roe’s family, the estimate is £30,000-40,000.
The medals will be sold with a Path Finder Force Badge Award Certificate, dated March 5, 1945, a telegram addressed to the recipient’s sister informing her that he is ‘Missing in Action’, dated March 6, plus letters, photographs, a bible, other ephemera and copied research.
This pair of early 19th century Bloor period Derby wine coolers, 12in (30cm) high, are painted with river landscapes and flowers verso, on green and gilt grounds. They are guided at £1500-2500 at the Fine Interiors sale at Sworders in Stansted Mountfitchet on December 6.
This 18th century 20in (51cm) limewood panel of a ribbon tied flowering spray, mounted in a moulded gilt wood frame with ribbon cresting, is signed by Antonie Chassagnolle.
A sculptor based in Lyon in the second half of the 18th century, he is recorded as exhibiting three similar bas-reliefs representing flowers at the city’s art fair in 1786.
It has a guide of £4000-6000 at Hutchinson Scott in Skipton, North Yorkshire on November 30-December 2.
Bourne End Auction Rooms in Buckinghamshire is to sell a collection of miniature furniture, doll’s houses and doll house furniture on December 7.
These were acquired throughout the years by Virginia Williams, an avid and knowledgeable collector who was also wife to Sir Frank Williams, the founder of the Williams Formula One team.
The collection, consigned directly by a family member, includes this c.1750 Italian burr walnut veneered bureau, standing just 19in (47cm) high, that is guided at £1000-1500.
The sale of Period Oak and Country Furniture at Wilkinson’s in Doncaster on December 3-4 includes this ‘host’ of angels.
The six 15th century English oak roof angels, each around 2ft 3in (70cm) high and carved with curly wind swept hair, long tunics and bearing a shield; were once part of the fabric of St Martin le Grand church in York.
Destroyed by bombs in 1942, the church was rebuilt in the 1960s under the supervision of the architect George Pace – the former owner of these late medieval carvings that are guided as a single lot at £30,000-40,000.