Late Victorian table bell, £3300 at Roseberys.

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With demand for much antique silver more muted that in past decades, novelty items are one sector that can buck the trend. Roseberys offered a late Victorian table bell modelled as a tortoise with a clockwork mechanism that makes the sound when the animal’s head or tail is depressed.

The 6¾in (17cm) long model was marked for Joseph Braham 1895, a London smith who specialised in novelty items. His business was acquired and became Padgett and Braham. It realised £3300 (estimate £1200-1800) in this south London auction.

Christie’s sold another version of this model, hallmarked for 1898, for $7000 in its New York rooms in 2009.


Shell decanter label of 1808 sold for £650 at Roseberys.

The well-known Regency silver partnership of Benjamin Smith II and James Smith III produced a silver decanter label of 1808 designed as a scallop shell which realised £650.

Benjamin is known to have made similar examples in silver gilt for George IV’s grand service.


One of two George III dishes, £2400 for the pair at Roseberys.

The sale also featured a 38-lot offering of silver from the late David Cornwell (the author John Le Carré). This provenance gave them added interest and ensured some competitive bidding, notably for a pair of George III rectangular shaped dishes by John Parker I and Edward Wakelin, 1769.

These had the bonus of bearing the engraved armorials of the Earl of Coventry (Parker and Wakelin supplied comport dishes to the 6th Earl in 1770). They sold for £2400.

Racing certainty


Racing sculpture by Charlie Langton, £17,000 at Roseberys.

Top-seller was a limited edition, 1/3, silver model by the sculptor Charlie Langton depicting the racehorse Frankel winning the 2000 guineas at Newmarket in 2011.

It was commissioned by the Osborne Studio Gallery in 2016 at the request of Juddmonte, the international thoroughbred horse racing and breeding enterprise founded by the late Prince Khalid bin Abdullah.

This work depicts the horse at full stretch winning the race by an unprecedented margin, a feat symbolised by the metre-long bronze base. It sold for a within-estimate price of £17,000.