Sale 122 Realises $3.4 Million

Sunday, 01 December 2019

The highlights of this auction was the sale of the Mark Freehill Collection of British hammered gold and silver coins and the Neal Archer Collection of Cromwell coins in the tenth session on Wednesday at 7.30pm. The session sold at 180 percent of estimate with several lots realising multiples of their estimate. There were five separate phone bidders and a bidder in the room from the UK to add to the excitement.  The sale was a success overall with a clearance rate of 85 percent at 124 percent of estimate for sold lots.


Highest price was recorded by the NSW holey dollar (lot 1128; est. $225,000) offered on the first night in the fifth session when it was referred to the highest bidder at $160,000 (or $195,200 with the buyer’s premium and GST). The next highest price went to the Elizabeth I fine gold sovereign (the front cover coin)(lot 2633; est. $30,000) at $75,640. Next was the Cromwell gold broad, 1656 (lot 2643; est. $25,000) at $69,540 and the half broad (lot 2644; est. $12,500) at $68,320. Then it was the Commonwealth unite, ex Bridgewater House Collection (lot 2642; est. $10,000) at $46,360. The Elizabeth I half pound (lot 2635; est. $7,500) and the Charles I Oxford Mint unite, 1643 (lot 2641; est. $10,000) each realised $26,840. Other strong results in British gold were an Edward III noble (lot 2626; est. $6,000) realising $10,736, a Henry VI noble (lot 2629; est. $6,000) realising $12,444, an Edward VI half sovereign (lot 2632; est. $5,000) realising $17,080; a Charles I unite (lot 2640; est. $2,000) realising $8,540 and the proof William IV sovereign (lot 2663; est. $7,000) realising $14,030. A George III currency sovereign, 1817 (lot 2651; est. $1,500) realised $7,076, and another of 1820 (lot 2652; est. $1,500) realised $4,636. A currency sovereign of William IV, 1831 (lot 2661; est. $1,500) realised $6,588; 1832 (lot 2662; est. $1,500) realised $5,368, and 1837 (lot 2664; est. $1,500) realised $4,026. A Scottish gold unite of James VI (lot 2721; est. $3,000) went to a local collector at $10,248.


Australian collectors were mainly successful in purchasing the Anglo-Saxon and Norman coins, strong results were for the Alfred the Great penny (lot 2733; est. $1,500) at $3,660, the Eadgar penny (lot 2736; est. $900) at $3,050; the Aethelred II penny (lot 2739; est. $400) at $1,586, the Edward the Confessor PAXX penny (lot 2748; est. $900) at $2,806; the Harold II penny (lot 2755; est. $2,500) at $4,758; the William I Romney Mint profile penny (lot 2757; est. $1,500) at $5,124, an attractive William I PAXS penny, Salisbury Mint (lot 2759; est. $1,000) at $2,440 and a William II penny (lot 2760; est. $1,000) at $5,612. Top prices in later hammered silver went to a posthumous groat of Henry VIII, ex Norweb Collection (lot 2884; est. $2,500) at $5,490, an Edward VI crown, 1553 (lot 2896; est. $3,000) at $6,588; an Edward VI threepence (lot 2901; est. $2,000) at $3,538; an Elizabeth I crown, 1601 (lot 2913; est. $5,000) at $7,564 and a milled shilling of Elizabeth I (lot 2919; est. $2,000) at $4,880. The East India Company issues of Elizabeth I were very strong, with the four testerns (1600) (lot 2924; est. $8,000) realising $24,400 and the two testerns (lot 2925; est. $6,000) realising $20,740. The Charles I Oxford Mint half pound, 1643 (lot 2965; est. $3,000) realised $9,028; the Newark siege halfcrown, 1645 (lot 2972; est. $2,500) realised $6,100 and the Pontefract shilling of Charles II (lot 2975; est. $6,000) realised $11,346. The Cromwell crown, halfcrown and shilling went to the same Australian buyer for a total of $30,012 (estimates totalling $20,000). A hammered shilling of Charles II (lot 2987; est. $2,000) realised $6,100.


The Proclamation coins at the commencement of the fifth session sold well, a Brazil 12,800 reis or Johanna of 1732M (lot 1094; est. $5,000) sold for $8,540 and an EIC Bengal mohur (lot 1115; est. $1,000) realised $2,684, and the best of the NSW fifteen pence or dumps (lot 1129; est. $50,000) sold for $61,000. All the Adelaide pounds sold well, the first (lot 1134; est. $8,000) realised $12,200, while the others realised $8,784 to $10,248 each, with the exception being (lot 1138, est. $7,000) at $12,444. One buyer in the room bought six of them as well as the two following Kangaroo Office restrikes. The Sydney Mint sovereigns of the first type were strong, the 1855 (lot 1145; est. $1,500) realised $6,100 and the 1856 (lot 1146; est. $750) realised $4,392. The later gold and silver coins in the session failed to shine. Both 1930 pennies realised $19,520 each and two red uncirculated 1946 pennies (lots 1350/1; est. $1,000 and $750) realised $1,952 each.


In world gold coins, an EIC mohur, 1841 (lot 1747; est. $2,000) realised $4,880 and a ‘ships schelling’ (lot 1768; est. $750) realised $3,416 after spirited bidding. In world silver a China sycee (lot 1903; est. $1,500) realised $7,076. The unpublished France, Provence gros tournois (lot 1934; est. $500) realised $4,148. Of the Russian roubles, the Ivan III did best (lot 2103; est. $3,000) at $7,930.


Highlight of the ancients was the ‘Boscoreale’ aureus of Nero (lot 3004; est. $12,000) which finally went to a live online bidder at $37,820 against a phone bidder from $18,000 up in a two horse race. The best of the decadrachms (lot 3039; est. $15,000) realised $23,180 to a floor bidder, the second (lot 3040; est. $15,000) went to an online bidder at $16,470.


In Session 13, Orders, Decorations and Medals there were some excellent results. The most outstanding lot by far (lot 3597) included a Distinguished Flying Medal along with a log book and a range of movie memorabilia for the 1955 movie, The Dam Busters, all belonging to a rear gunner who was on the WWII dam buster raid and also on the operation that sank the German battleship, Tirpitz. On an estimate of $5,000 it realised $29,280. This was a great result because the proceeds of the sale are to be donated to three different charities. Another good realisation was for the bravery awards to the most decorated NSW fireman, now deceased, with his group (lot 3708; est. $35,000) achieving $41,480 and another bravery pair to an heroic Tasmanian citizen (lot 3709; est. $15,000) realised $18,300. Top price in the Militaria section was paid for a watercolour painting of HMAS Sydney Destroying the German Cruiser SMS Emden (lot 3588; est. $5,000) by renowned artist John Downes Castle, which sold for $6,100. 


In world banknotes, an East Africa twenty shillings, 1933 (lot 4039; est. $200) realised $2,257, a Fiji, twenty pounds, 1948 (lot 4046; est. $12,000) realised $13,420 and a Hong Kong Chartered Bank ten dollars, 1929 (lot 4076; est. $500) realised $3,660. A New Zealand fifty pounds, (1940-55)(lot 4158; est. $2,000) realised $4,880.


In Australian banknotes, a few notable results were a Bank of NSW one pound, 1899 (lot 4209; est. $4,000) realised $5,002, a Cerutty/Collins ten shillings, 1918 (lot 4242; est. $5,000) realised $7,076, a rainbow pound, (1914-15)(lot 4283; est. $8,000) realised $9,150, and a Rabaul Treasury note (lot 4397; est. $5,000) realised $8,784. A record was achieved for the Internment Camp penny canteen coupon for Harvey, W. Australia (lot 4401; est. $1,500) at $5,124.


Consignments for our next sale close on the 7th February. Already included are a collection of ancient Greek silver coins, a Russian gold ten roubles, 1773, further selections from the Mark Freehill and Dr V.J.A. Flynn Collections, and part 3 of the W. ‘Bill’ Woolmore Collection of military medals. Compliments of the season to you all.


Jim Noble

November 2019

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