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The Autumn Fine Jewellery, Watches & Silver Sale Preview

7th October 2020.

Fine period and modern jewellery, collectable vintage and luxury designer watches and fine silver come together in the Fine Jewellery, Watches and Silver at Tennants Auctioneers on 14th November, which will run alongside the Autumn Fine Sale and the Traditional Pictures Sale.

A fine example of Etruscan Revival Jewellery is one of the highlights of the sale. Made by the Castellani family of jewellers in Rome, the gold bracelet, which was made circa 1870, comprises an articulated bracelet composed of three rows of curved batons, with lion’s head terminals and is estimated to sell for £20,000-30,000 (all estimates exclude buyer’s premium). The Castellani family of jewellers in Rome started the Etruscan Revival movement circa 1815, and their wares remain the most sought-after on the market today.

An Edwardian Amethyst, Diamond and Enamel Pendant on Chain commemorating the 1911 Delhi Durbar is offered with an estimate of £1,000-1,500. The rare jewel comes from the descendants of Lady Frances Irene Campbell, who was presented with the pendant to mark the Durbar, an Imperial gathering to celebrate the succession of George V as Emperor of India. Her husband, Archibald Campbell (later knighted), was the Private Secretary to Thomas Gibson Carmichael the then Governor of Madras.

Also of note are a Georgian Emerald and Diamond Ring (estimate: £3,000-5,000), and an elegant Diamond Necklace, Bracelet and Earring Suite by Tiffany & Co. (estimate: £10,000-15,000).

The jewellery section also includes a good selection of 1920s/30s jewellery from a private family collection. Highlights include a Diamond Bow Brooch by LaCloche Fres, circa 1925, which is stamped with the makers’ mark and offered with an estimate of £1,500-2,000. A Pink Sapphire and Diamond Brooch, with exquisite colour and well-matched stones, is offered with an estimate of £2,000-4,000, and an unusual Art Deco Jade, Diamond, Ruby and Onyx Pendant of geometric giardinetto design with an estimate of £1,500-2,000.  

A Rare and Early 1957 Pre-Moon Omega Speedmaster (reference 2915-1) is one of the highlights of a stellar line-up of vintage and luxury watches on offer in the sale. Estimated at £18,000-22,000, this is one of the most desirable Speedmasters on the market today. In production between 1957 and 1959, the 2915 was made in three different iterations, and this is an example of the first. The Speedmaster is joined by a Rare 1953 Rolex Pre-Explorer (reference 6150), estimated at £10,000-15,000. This reference is one of the rarest and earliest examples of the Explorer model, and the dial is signed ‘Precision’. After 1953, the dials were signed ‘Explorer’, and the watches were marketed for adventurers and explorers having been initially launched to celebrate Hillary and Norgay’s ascension of Everest.

Also of note is a 1991 Rolex Cosmograph Daytona Zenith “Inverted 6” (reference 16528/16500), on offer with an estimate of £20,000-25,000, and a Rare 18 carat Gold 1981 Rolex GMT-Master with “Rootbeer Nipple Dial” (reference 16758), on offer with an estimate of £18,000-22,000. The highly sought-after “Rootbeer” dial has the original reddish-brown colouration, which has a desirable patina of vibrant orange flecks, typically caused by exposure to sunlight.

The earliest lot in the sale is a Rare Henry VII Parcel-Gilt Silver Apostle-Spoon, made in London in 1508. The spoon has a tear-drop shaped bowl and a gilt terminal cast as St John holding a Cup of Sorrow and crowned by a nimbus cast with a star (estimate: £8,000-12,000). Apostle spoons were often given as Christening gifts, either singularly or in sets of thirteen – the twelve Apostles with a thirteenth ‘master’ spoon depicting Christ.

Further highlights of antique silver and objects of vertu include a set of ten George III Silver Dinner-Plates by Daniel Smith and Robert Sharp of London. Made in 1782 and 1784, each plate features a gadrooned rim and they are engraved with the Royal arms flanked by the initials ‘WR’ and a further crest below an earl’s coronet for the Earl of Haddington (estimate: £3,000-5,000). Measuring just 3.5cm high is a George III Gold and Enamel Scent-Bottle, with maker’s mark IH or JH, and made in London circa 1770. Finely coloured in green, blue and white enamel with a blue glass stoper and presented in a fitted shagreen case, the pear-shaped bottle is estimated at £400-600.

A good selection of 20th Century silver and objects of vertu includes a seven-piece American Silver Tea and Coffee-Service by Tiffany and Co., New York (1907-1938) which is estimated at £4,000-6,000. The set is made in the George III style, and each piece is engraved with a crest. A Dunhill Silver Plate Charleston Giant Table-Lighter with Watch, made in 1986 and numbered 14 from a limited edition of 200, is offered with an estimate of £1,200-1,800.

Also of interest is an Elizabeth II Channel Islands Two Colour 18 Carat Gold Millennium Bell (estimate: £30,000-50,000). Made by Bruce Russell and Son of Guernsey in 2000, it is number seven from a limited edition of ten. Engraved ‘Let the Truth Ring Out’, it has five applied white gold medallions stamped with the principle churches of the Channel Islands above the engraved crests of each island.

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