News & Insights

Antiquarian books from two private collections

8th March 2018.

Two collections of Antiquarian Books exceeded expectations in Tennants Auctioneers’ Book Sale on 7th March, with each collection selling for just over £43,000 hammer price. Prices were strong and bidding was competitive throughout the sale, and a total hammer price of £122,920 and a 95% sold rate was achieved for the 235 lots offered.

The first collection, consisting of 40 lots, came from Le Pavillon - formerly part of the Shortgrove Estate in Essex - from which Tennants has sold fine lots of art and antiques over the past six months. With an emphasis on classical texts and early English literature and volumes dating from the 16th to 19th centuries, the collection attracted national and international interest. Top lots from the collection included Quintus Calaber, Derelictorum ab Homero Libri Quatuordecim, Venice, c.1505, which sold for £2,700 plus buyer’s premium, and a copy of Seneca, Tragoediae, Venice, 1517, which sold for £2,100 plus buyer’s premium.

The second collection to come under the hammer was from the Library at Ampleforth Abbey, North Yorkshire, as instructed by Ampleforth Abbey Trust. The 86 lot collection included volumes from the 16th to the early 20th centuries and covered subjects such as natural history, law, philosophy, cartography, history, art and religion. The top lot of the collection, and indeed the sale, was a folio volume of Abu I-Hasan ‘Ali ibn Abi I-Rijal (commonly known as Haly), Albohazen Haly Filii Abenragel, Scriptoris Arabici, Basel, 1571. Complete with early owner names of Robert Langton, Thome Pilkington and Robert Booth, the volume sold for £2,800 plus buyer’s premium. Also selling well was a three volume collection of engraved plates for G. Shaw, Vivarium Naturae or the Naturalist’s Miscellany (plates dating from 1790-1801), which sold for £2,600 plus buyer’s premium.

Elsewhere in the sale was an interesting archive of letters, photographs, sketches, medals etc., which had belonged to Harold Holder (1911-81), bodyguard to the Duke of Windsor. Of Royal interest, the collection sold for £1,800 plus buyer’s premium against an estimate of £300-500.

We are currently accepting lots for the next sale of Books, Maps, Prints & Manuscripts on 8th June 2018, please contact us on 01969 623780 or for details.

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