Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
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    Saturday, December 10th, 2022
    Woman and Fox by Paulne Bewick at Whyte’s. UPDATE: THIS MADE 600 AT HAMMER

    From Doneraile to Belturbet and Dublin to Birr there will be a flurry of Christmas auctions in the coming week.  Online auctions by Aidan Foley in Doneraile, Mullen’s in Laurel Park, Bray and by Victor Mee in Belturbet will get the ball rolling tomorrow. Aidan Foley’s auction in Doneraile will include contents from a former antiques shop in Kenmare with a selection of antique furniture including a Victorian hall table, a rosewood display stand and  a selection of occasional tables.  There is a watercolour by the Cork artist Henry Albert Hartland (1840-1893) and a lithograph by Tony O’Malley as well as a French tapestry rug and some Persian rugs.

    This specimen table comes up at Mullen’s in Bray. UPDATE: THE CLOSING BID WAS 4,000

    A circular continental specimen table inlaid with Breccia marble, lapil-lazuli, malachite, blue john and other semi precious stones is the top lot at Mullen’s of Laurel Park tomorrow. On a spreading column above a platform base it is estimated at €4,000-€6,000.  This will be a timed auction with 830 lots of antique furniture, art, jewellery, lighting and collectibles.  It will start  to close from 6 pm. There will be 160 lots of jewellery headed by a white gold necklace with graduated diamonds (€12,000-€14,000) as well as silver and plate at Victor Mee’s Christmas sale of 189 lots in Belturbet at 6 pm tomorrow.  The catalogue is online.

    Meantime there is viewing in Dublin this weekend and on Monday for Whyte’s timed online Christmas art auction which begins to close from 6 pm on Monday (December 12).  No less than 266 lots are on offer from artists as diverse as Gladys MacCabe and Robert Ballagh to Markey Robinson and Pauline Bewick.  The selection of American artists includes work by Bob Dylan and Shepard Fairey.  There are Christmas greeting cards by Patrick Scott and art by John Morris, Norman McCaig, Desmond Carrick, Ciaran Clear, Maria Simonds-Gooding, Elizabeth Brophy, Thomas Ryan, Barry Castle, Maurice Wilks, Evie Hone, Harry Kernoff, Anne Yeats and many more.  The catalogue is online. There will be a selection of jewellery at John Weldon’s auction at Temple Bar in Dublin on Tuesday (December 13) and a collection of Irish and world interest books will come under the hammer online at a sale by Purcell Auctioneers of Birr on Wednesday. This sale will be headed by  a narrative by Sir John Ross of a second voyage in search of the North West Passage in 1835 complete with charts and plates.  A timed sale of fine vintage wines and spirits at James Adam ends from 11 am on Wednesday (December 18).

    A French tapestry rug at Aidan Foley’s sale. UPDATE: THIS MADE 110 AT HAMMER


    Monday, March 7th, 2016

    An historic Atkinson, a Queen Anne bureau bookcase, a 10′ Regency sideboard, a three pillar dining table and a Victorian four poster bed will feature at Woodwards sale in Cork on March 12.  A rare pictorial record of the visit of Queen Victoria to Cork Harbour in 1849 is contained in George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson’s oil painting of the Royal Yacht Squadron bringing Queen Victoria to Cobh. It is estimated at 25,000-30,000.  As a result of the visit the Cove of Cork was renamed Queenstown, reverting to Cobh in the late 1920’s. The double domed Queen Anne bookcase has an estimate of 5,000-8,00, the pillared dining table, which extends to 16″, is estimated at 6,000-10,000, the four poster at 2,000-3,000 and the sideboard at 4,000-6,000.

    There is an estimate of 3,000-4,000 on a pair of Coalbrookedale garden seats and a Georgian long case clock with parquetry inlay by John Hallifax (1694-1750), Barnsley  is estimated at 2,000-3,000. The catalogue is online. (See post on for February 18, 2016).

    A Regency sideboard (4,000-6,000).

    A Regency sideboard (4,000-6,000).  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    A Queen Anne double domed bureau bookcase (5,000-8,000).

    A Queen Anne double domed bureau bookcase (5,000-8,000).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 4,100 AT HAMMER

    A Victorian four poster bed (2,000-3,000).

    A Victorian four poster bed (2,000-3,000). UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,000 AT HAMMER


    Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

    Mealy’s will have a spring thrift auction in Castlecomer on February 13.  All 500 lots are to be sold without reserve.  The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    A Georgian mahogany oval tray (100-150)

    A Georgian mahogany oval tray (100-150)

    An unusual marquetry games table (200-400)

    An unusual marquetry games table (200-400)

    A 19th century walnut Continental corner cupboard (100-200)

    A 19th century walnut Continental corner cupboard (100-200)

    A Noritake Irish tea and dinner service (70-120)

    A Noritake Irish tea and dinner service (70-120)

    An inlaid slope front bureau (100-200).

    An inlaid slope front bureau (100-200).


    Saturday, July 25th, 2015

    A pair of French demi-lune tables from the estate of Rathcormac, Co. Cork collector Tim Arnold will highlight Woodwards summer sale on July 29.  The late Mr. Arnold had taken ownership of a disused church in the village last year with the intention of creating a heritage centre. Furniture and effects from the church are included in the auction.  The tables are estimated at 2,500-4,000.  The catalogue is online and the auction will be broadcast live on the internet.

    Georgian long case clock.

    A Georgian long case clock. UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,700

    A pair of Louis XV walnut demi-lune side tables with ribbon inlay

    A pair of Louis XV walnut demi-lune side tables with ribbon inlay UPDATE: THESE WERE UNSOLD



    Friday, May 15th, 2015

    The catalogue for the six day auction at Cahir Park House in 1962 (80-120)

    The catalogue for the six day auction at Cahir Park House in 1962 (80-120)  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 150

    There is always something of interest for everyone at rare books sales and Fonsie Mealy’s at the Ormonde Hotel in Kilkenny on May 19 is no exception.  Antique collectors of every sort will be interested in lot 577, the catalogue for the six day sale at Cahir Park House, Co. Tipperary in March 1962.   The sale was carried out by Battersby and Co. on the instructions of the executors of the late Col. R.B. Charteris.

    The 677 lot auction offers a rich section of sporting memorabilia and a wide variety of other items of interest.  The catalogue is online.

    (See post on for May 8, 2015).

    There are two original coders used for the transatlantic telegraph (60-80).

    There are two original coders used for the transatlantic telegraph (60-80). UPDATE: THESE SOLD FOR 100

    The match sliotar from the 1913 All-Ireland Hurling Final (800-1,000).

    The match sliotar from the 1913 All-Ireland Hurling Final (800-1,000).  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 2,100


    Monday, April 27th, 2015

    An intact and complete Elephant Bird Egg, Madagascar, 17th-century or earlier. Copyright Sotheby’s.

    An intact and complete Elephant Bird Egg, Madagascar, 17th-century or earlier. Copyright Sotheby’s.

    An elephant bird egg, measuring over 30 centimeters high, comes up at Sotheby’s in London on April 30.  The extremely rare egg – believed to be over 400 years old – is from the largest bird ever to live on the planet.

    Now extinct, the great elephant bird – a giant flightless bird indigenous to the island of Madagascar – measured over three metres tall, and weighed over half a ton.

    The elephant bird became extinct at some point between the 13th and 17th centuries, so this perfectly intact example could be up to 800 years old.

    Due to their colossal size and rarity the eggs became sought-after in the late 19th century.  This one is from the collection of  Swiss carriage-maker and businessman Otto Alfred Heimburger.

    Estimated at £30,000-50,000 the egg is part of a Travel, Atlases, Maps and Natural History auction.

    UPDATE: This was unsold but a reassembled sold for £2,215


    Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

    FROM Shinnors to Scott, Markey to Maderson  the Morgan O’Driscoll Irish art sale in Cork on October 17 has much variety to offer collectors. There are abstracts and still lifes, landscapes, portraits, beaches, horses and cliffs.  Despite the Yeats effect – the impact of the million euro Yeats’ painting at Adams at the end of September on the market for Irish art – the estimates in this sale represent good value.

    The 285 lot auction is at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Little Island, Cork on October 17  at 6.30 p.m.  Here is a small selection from what is on offer. The entire catalogue is on-line:

    UPDATE:  THE sale brought in 212,000 at hammer.  The top lot was Potato Gatherers by Markey Robinson which made 6,400 and there were good prices for works by Mark O’Neill, Kenneth Webb, John Shinnors and Arthur Maderson.

    Sean Scully (b.1945) 'Horizon I' limited edition print 29/40 (2,000 - 2,500). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 1,900

    John Luke RUA (1906-1975) 'Villiage Scene' watercolour (3,000 - 4,000). UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Sean Keating PRHA HRA HRSA (1889-1978) 'Irish Free State Bacon' offset lithograph poster printed in colour Provenance: Commissioned by the Empire Marketing Board in 1929 as part of a campaign to market Irish produce in Britain. (600 - 900) UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Pauline Bewick RHA (b.1935) 'Yellow Man in Fig Tree' (8,000 -12,000). UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Grace Henry HRHA (1868-1953) 'Old Woman Sewing' (3,000 - 5,000). UPDATE: THIS MADE 3,200

    Brian Ballard RUA (b.1943) 'Tulips and Green Bottle' (1,400-1,800). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 1,100.

    William Scott OBE RA (1913-1989) 'Pears' (2,000 - 2,500). UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD


    Friday, July 1st, 2011

    An Irish longcase clock by Heroman of Dublin (8,500-9,500). UPDATE: UNSOLD AT THE AUCTION, UNDER ACTIVE NEGOTIATION AFTERWARDS.

    Mealy’s two day fine and decorative art sale takes place on Tuesday and Wednesday July 5-6 at Castlecomer, Co. Kilkenny.  There is decorative art, furniture, carpets, art, garden furniture, light fittings, glassware and militaria.
    Here is a small selection of some of the lots on offer.  The entire catalogue is on-line at
    UPDATE:  The sale brought in 300,000 at hammer.  It was 80 per cent sold on day one, 65 per cent sold on day two giving an overall sell rate of 72 per cent.  Mealy’s used lived internet bidding for the first time at this sale and found it spectacularly successful.  There were 500 registered internet bidders from 57 countries.  About 15 per cent of the entire auction went to internet bidders.
    See post for June 27.

    A 19th century Italian fruit walnut and marquetry commode at Mealy's. It is estimated at 3,000-5,000. (Click on image to enlarge) UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,800

    A c1900 card table in the style of E.W. Godwin (400-600). (Click on image to enlarge) UPDATE: THIS MADE 380

    One of a pair of carved giltwood girandoles. (1,500-2,500). UPDATE: THIS MADE 3,400.

    A pair of brass mounted walnut and rosewood encoignure (3,500-5,500). UPDATE: THESE WERE UNSOLD.

    A kingwood and ormolu mounted gueridon (800-1,500). UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,700.


    Monday, June 27th, 2011

    A Boer War bedspread, profusely decorated with devices, monograms, initials and assorted decorations. (Click on image to enlarge). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 550

    THIS Boer War bedspread, which features at Mealy’s on July 5,  was reputedly rescued from the sinking Lusitania off the coast of Cork in 1915.  It is lot number 211 at Mealy’s two day summer fine and decorative art sale in Castlecomer, Co. Kilkenny on July 5 and 6.  There are 1,200 lots on offer.

    Such quilts were common at the turn of the 20th century.  They usually bore the name of the woman or women who created them, the soldiers name or initials and other decoration.  They often included symbols that were difficult to decipher.

    This c1900 quilt bears the names and initials of both men and women. The name Roberts, sewn on the middle left, is believed to be Field Marshall Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts, a distinguished Indian born British peer, who was Anglo Irish.

    According to the catalogue notes this suggests that the quilt commemorates soldiers who sailed to the Cape on the RMS Dunottar Castle, which carried Earl Roberts.   It is estimated at 600-900.

    The catalogue for the sale is on-line.  It includes decorative art, furniture, carpets, textiles, paintings, light fittings, garden furniture, bronzes, musical instruments, clocks, silver, wine, glass, militaria and firearms.



    Friday, April 1st, 2011

    The antiques and interiors auction at Hegarty’s in Bandon, Co. Cork on Sunday, April 3 at 4 p.m. will include furniture, jewellery, silver, paintings and ceramics. This is a sale of around 500 lots.  There is a one-owner offering of six 19th century Victorian and Regency sewing and works tables, amassed over the past 20 years.

    The sale includes about 20 lots of jewellery and 20 garden items.  The catalogue is available on-line.  Hegarty’s are located at Parnell Business Park, The By-pass, Bandon and hold regular monthly sales.

    A c1810 rosewood foldover card table from Hegarty's sale in Bandon, Co. Cork on April 3. It is estimated at 1,500-2,500. UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR 1,250

    An Irish teapoy with scroll stretchers at Hegarty's. The estimate is around 900. UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD.

    A Victorian library table at Hegarty's. It is estimated at 1,000-1,500. UPDATE: THIS WAS NOT SOLD.

    A 19th century rosewood bombe shaped writing desk at Hegarty's. It is estimated at 2,500-3,500. UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,900

    A c1870 walnut and marquetry inlaid work table at Hegarty's. It is estimated at 1,400-1,800. UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,050