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    Monday, June 17th, 2019

    A topographical Cork city scene by Letitia Marion Hamilton will highlight the Lynes and Lynes sale in Carrigtwohill on June 22.  Cork city paintings by Hamilton are unusual and rarely turn up so auctioneer Denis Lynes anticipates that  there will be plenty of interest.  It is a busy scene showing St. Patrick’s Quay and Penrose Quay.  There are cars parked on the quayside and at least one horse and cart.  Brian Boru bridge is depicted with the R and H Hall and Odlums buildings in the background.  This is a city centre and river scape of a rapidly changing area but it recalls a Cork that many will clearly remember.  The estimate for the work is 10,000-15,000.

    Cork city scene by Letitia Mation Hamilton RHA (1878-1964)

    There is a Head of Christ by Maurice Desmond and Three Shadows, a limited edition print by Tony O’Malley. Lot 217 is a c1900 carved oak and gilded altar with an estimate of just 200-400.  Other furniture includes a Victorian four door bookcase and a pair of Cork nine bar open chairs. 

    On offer too is a silver trowel presented to Sean MacEntee, Minister for Health and Social Welfare,  on the occasion of the laying of the foundation stone for the New Erinville Hospital on June 7, 1961. In the Celtic Revival style and by William Egan of Cork it is estimated at 800-1,200.  A c1792 Dublin sugar bowl by Matthew West is estimated at 300-500.


    Sunday, June 16th, 2019

    An important moment of Irish history – The Year of the French – is captured in a archive at Bonhams Fine Books and Manuscripts auction in London on June 26.  Lot 17 comprises of papers kept by George Hewett, Adjutant-General of the British Army in Ireland 1791-99 and Commander-in-Chief of Ireland, 1813-16, prior to and during the French invasion of 1798.  This is the campaign for Irish independence fought by Theobald Wolfe Tone. The archive includes a printed proclamation headed ‘Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, Union’ issued by General Jean Hardy beginning: “Irishmen!/You have not forgotten Bantry bay! you know the effects to assist you which France has already made: her affection for you, her desire to avenge your wrongs and assure your independence remain the same…” There are speeches by Bartholomew Teeling and Wolfe Tone’s speech from the dock.  The archive is estimated at £10,000-15,000.

    The archive at Bonhams


    Saturday, June 15th, 2019

    A poignant reminder of a long lost love affair is among the lots at Fonsie Mealy’s sale of rare books, literature, manuscripts, collectibles and ephemera at the Talbot Hotel, Stillorgan, Dublin on June 18.  Lot 345 is a hatbox stamped K. Cronin/Lorha with fur hat, a pair of gloves, another hat and other items.  Kitty Cronin, nee Kiernan, was the fiance of Michael Collins and after his death she married Felix Cronin, Tipperary.  The hat is similar to one in contemporary press photos of Kitty and it is estimated at 300-400. Another reminder of turbulent times is a 1916 Irish Citizen Army tin home made explosive device.

    Kitty Kiernan’s hat box and fur hat 

    A first edition of Ulysses signed by James Joyce is a highlight of the sale with an estimate of 70,000-90,000.  A George III grandfather clock is from the home of James Joyce’s aunts at No. 15 Ushers Island, the house featured in The Dead by Joyce.  It is estimated at 2,000-3,000.  Among a small collection of documents from Sean O’Casey is one in which he complains about being evicted after 17 years.  The landlord had decided he needed it for his mother and his daughter:  “The joke is that we were no sooner gone than the notice For Sale went up.. and they wonder why the masses are turning to communism!” O’Casey wrote.  Around 700 lots will come under the hammer and viewing at the Talbot Hotel gets underday on June 16.

    The clock from the home of James Joyces aunts which featured in his story The Dead


    Wednesday, June 12th, 2019

    An exceptional Hermes matte white Himalaya Niloticus Crocodile Birkin 35 with palladium hardware made £162,500 at Christie’s handbags and accessories auction on June 11. The 2015 model had been estimated at £70,000-90,000. A 2007 Hermes crocodile Birkin 25 made £118,750 and a 1999 Hermes shiny vert celadon alligator Kelly made £63,750. The auction totalled £3.36 million with sell through rates of 97% by value and 93% by lot. There was bidding from 41 countries across six continents.

    The Hermes matte white Birkin 35


    Monday, June 10th, 2019

    AN exciting archive of accounts from the first Dail of 1919 is included in Fonsie Mealy’s sale of books, literature, manuscripts and collectibles at the Talbot Hotel in Dublin on June 18. These are described as the financial sinews of the struggle for Independence with some accounts almost certainly written by Michael Collins. Previously unpublished, they are from the archive of Domhnall Ua Conchubhair (1872-1935), sometime secretary to the Gaelic League, accountant to Sinn Fein, the First Dail and allied bodies. The archive contains a green clothbound ledger with 20 pages of loan and deposit accounts for the Dail of 1921-22 with a separate page of military claims. This includes a note stating that amounts paid to the M. Collins account are not entered in the books of the Sinn Fein Bank and taken from notebook only. As far as Fonsie Mealy knows these accounts are unpublished and have not been seen or quoted by any historian. The estimate for the archive is 15,000-20,000.


    Thursday, June 6th, 2019

    A first edition of Ulysses, number 30 of 100 copies signed by Joyce and printed on fine Dutch handmade paper, comes up at Fonsie Mealy’s Rare Books, Literature, Manuscripts, Collectibles and Ephemera sale at the Talbot Hotel, Stillorgan, Dublin on June 18. Described by Fonsie Mealy as the cornerstone of any Irish collection copies of this most desireable printing are all but unavailable now. Most of the original copies are securely lodged in institutional and important collections from which they are unlikely to emerge. These copies are from the full edition of 1000 finely bound by Buddenbrooks of Boston in full patinated black morocco with dark green inlays. This rare prize is estimated at 70,000-90,000.


    Sunday, June 2nd, 2019

    The Maharajahs and Mughal Magnificent sale at Christie’s in New York on June 19 promises to be the most valuable jewellery auction ever – eclipsing that of Elizabeth Taylor which totalled $144 million in December of 2011.The mystic east at its most fabulous is revealed in this unprecedented group of jewels, gemstones, and decorative objects from The Al Thani Collection. It consists of almost 400 lots spanning more than 500 years.The Al Thani family rules Qatar and many of the pieces in the sale have been seen at exhibitions of their collection at The Metropolitan Museum in New York and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.  Among many highlights are the Patiala Ruby Choker created by Cartier Paris in 1931 which is considered by many to be the finest ruby necklace ever made and a riviere necklace from the collection of the Nizam of Hyderabad with nearly 200 carats of fine Golconda diamonds.Works from the Al Thani Collection will be shown at a new museum space due to open in central Paris next year.  The museum will provide for the long term display of select pieces drawn from across the entire collection.


    Significant historical pieces are complemented by an important selection from the 20th century by the houses of Bulgari, Cartier, Janesich, Lacloche, Linzeler, Mauboussin, and Mellerio.  The Patiala Ruby Choker was commissioned by Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala, one of the Cartier’s most important Indian clients of the 1920’s and ’30’s.  He often travelled to Paris with trunks of diamonds and gemstones from his treasury for Cartier’s workshops.

    The Arcot II, D Colour, Internally flawless, one of two diamonds presented to Queen Charlotte, wife of George III, by Muhammad Ali Wallajah, Nawab of Arcot.


    Saturday, May 25th, 2019

    Among the real rarities at Inside Out, Sheppards auction of garden sculpture, architectural ornaments and French art at Glantelwe Gardens, Durrow on May 28 is an original cast iron Irish Posts and Telegraphs post box. Originally in Cork city centre it was donated to a charity auction years ago following demolition work.  Lot 67 is estimated at 6,000-9,000.

    The Irish Posts & Telegraphs pillar box UPDATE: THE PILLAR BOX WAS UNSOLD

    From cast iron furniture and garden benches to classical urns and terracotta plaques this sale offers much in the way of choice. The selection of antique garden pieces includes bird baths, animal figures, bollards, stone troughs, sculpture, fountain heads, arches, cast iron gates, sundials and gothic arches. With 600 lots of garden furniture and 100 lots from a private collection of French art there is a huge variety here to choose from.  The catalogue is online.


    Monday, May 13th, 2019

    Photographic works including images of Irish travellers by the pioneering photographer Charles Harry Hewitt (1915-1987) will come up at Chiswick Auctions Photographica sale in London on May 16.

    Irish Travellers, Dublin c1950’s.

    Known as ‘Slim Hewitt’, due to his slender frame, he led the way in reportage photography at The Picture Post and on the BBC’s Tonight programme. His fly on the wall style photography and filming has been described by those that knew him as having “the drive and ability to bring the world and its events before its audience.” Starting out as a war photographer, taking photos of the Normandy landings and the inside of Belsen Prisoner of war camp, ‘Slim’ had a unique ability to retain all nuances of a situation and encapsulate them in his work.


    Monday, May 13th, 2019

    A set of Finn Juhl chairs designed in 1946 for the Copenhagen Cabinetmakers Guild exhibition and which were used as boardroom chairs at the Gowan Group in Ballsbridge come up at de Veres design auction in Dublin on May 19.

    One of a number of pairs of chairs by Finn Juhl  UPDATE: THREE LOTS OF TWO CHAIRS MADE HAMMER PRICES OF 11,000, 11,500 AND 11,500 RESPECTIVELY.

    This is a pop up auction of 180 lots of classic design furniture and lighting, 250 lots of contemporary Irish art and wines from the 2005 Bordeaux vintage. Danish and Italian pieces from the 1950’s, ’60’s and ’70’s are included along with work by Arne Jacobsen, Eileen Gray, Florence Knoll, Willy Rizzo, Cini Boeri and Pierre Paulin with furniture by Bo Concept and Ligne Roset.   There is art by Patrick Scott, Michael Farrell, Neil Shawcross and the balance of The Axa Art collection sold last year by de Veres.    The 93 cases of en primeur wine are to be sold in a timed auction with bidding up to 8 pm on May 19.  The auction at 2 pm on May 19 takes place at 35 Fitzwilliam Square, Dublin. The catalogue is online.

    An Italian triennale floor lamp attributed to Angelo Lelli UPDATE: THIS FAILED TO SELL