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  • Posts Tagged ‘Fonsie Mealy’


    Thursday, October 1st, 2020

    The top lot at Fonsie Mealy’s three day sale in Castlecomer this week was a set of four Killarney paintings by James Arthur O’Connor (1792 – 1841) which made a hammer price of 22,000. The oil on board works in matching gilt frames were commissioned by the Godfrey family in Co. Kerry and came to auction by direct family descent. A bronze figure of Cu Chulainn by Edward Delaney made 19,000. Other top lots included an early 19th century Korean storage cabinet (15,000), a mid 18th century Chinoiserie decorated and lacquered kneehole desk (12,000) and a 17th century Flemish tapestry (8,500). The sale realised just over one million euro on the hammer.

    One of four views of Killarney by James Arthur O’Connor


    Tuesday, September 29th, 2020

    A Cork Republican Silver strawberry dish made a hammer price of 7,000 over a top estimate of 3,000 at Fonsie Mealy’s sale in Castlecomer today. It was described by the auctioneer as rare and important. The dish has a lobed rim and beaten surface and the W.E. (William Egan) punch. Cork Republican silver refers to silverware produced in the city during the Civil War. Only about 60-80 pieces are known to have survived. At the height of the war it was impossible for silversmiths Egans to send their pieces for assay to Dublin and so they devised their own hallmark based on the Arms of Cork. This depicts a two masted left facing ship with a single towered castle on either side. These marks were destroyed once the silver could once again be sent to Dublin.

    This Cork Republican silver dish sold for 7,000.


    Monday, September 28th, 2020

    This 18th century embroidered silk panel sold for a hammer price of 8,500 at Fonsie Mealy’s Chatsworth autumn fine art sale at Castlecomer, Co. Kilkenny today. The large panel, which depicts a mythical scene with figures and birds by a rocky stream with two figures riding on birds in the clouds, had been estimated at 600-800. The live online sale continues until September 30.


    Saturday, September 26th, 2020

    The wine cellar from Luggala, a pair of sculpted whippets attributed to John Hogan, the intact electrical unit installed by the Jennings family at the first home in Cork with residential electricity and a pair of opium chairs from Korea are among the lots at Fonsie Mealy’s Chatsworth Fine Art sale in Castlecomer on September 28, 29 and 30.The 1,631 lots on offer range from antique furniture and paintings to silver, Oriental ceramics, jewellery, carpets, fireplaces, taxidermy and even vintage cars.  Viewing continues to be available by appointment from 1 pm to 5 pm today and tomorrow and the entire sale is online. More than 100 lots of wine from Luggala, the Guinness family home of the late Garech Browne, will come up on day one from lot 410.  The selection includes vintages from  1959, 1960 and ‘6i.  There are various lots of unopened cases of wines from the Medoc and Bordeaux, champagnes, wines from Spain, Portugal and Chile, vintage port and four bottles of 1990 Chateau  d’Yquem.  On offer too is a 1939 red Austin 8 convertible and a stylish two tone 1959 Morris Minor with retractable red soft top. Brookfield, now part of the UCC medical campus, was the first private residence in Cork with electricity.  The brass and copper wall mounted unit in an Edwardian walnut cabinet installed by Porter Sykes & Co., Electrical Engineers, Cork & Dublin remains intact with amp and volt meters. Lot 1267 is estimated at €2,000-€3,000.

    A carved oak breakfront overmantle by Pugin originally at Fonthill Abbey, Wiltshire is estimated at €4,000-€6,000.  A selection of sculpture by Edward Delaney from the collection of Garech Browne includes a figure of Cu Chulainn (€6,000-€8,000).  Lot 1357, a pair of sculptured marble whippets attributed to John Hogan, is estimated at €15,000-€20,000.  Lot 153 is a pair of large Korean opium hardwood benches (€350-€450) and lot 154 is a pair of small opium benches (€200-€300).  The three day online auction starts at 11 am on each day.

     Pair of sculptured marble whippets attributed to John Hogan (1800-1858). UPDATE: THESE MADE 13,000 AT HAMMER


    Monday, September 21st, 2020

    The Carnal Series is the title of these pieces by the sculptor Edward Delaney, RHA (1930 – 2009). They come up as part of a collection of sculptures by the artist at Fonsie Mealy’s autumn fine art sale in Castlecomer on September 28, 29 and 30. The set of four variant silver alloy statues depicting alternative poses of sexual acts, each initialled and hall marked, gifted by the sculptor to the Honourable Garech Browne, are estimated at 2,000-3,000. There are a number of works by Edward Delaney from the Luggala collection of Garech Browne in the auction.



    Saturday, July 11th, 2020

    A landmark of Irish printed literature, a fine collection of Cork silhouettes and a print of a sorry massacre at Rathcormac, Co. Cork in 1834 are among the lots at Fonsie Mealy’s timed online collectors sale which runs until July 15. An Incunabula – a book printed before 1501 – is always a rarity.  This first edition of the first book by an Irish author to write for a printing press rather than the scriptorum dates to November 1497 and was printed in Venice.  The author is Archbishop Maurice O’Fihely of Tuam, a native of Baltimore in west Cork. O’Fihely, a Franciscan, provided major commentary on the investigation of  Scottish Franciscan Blessed John Duns, known as Duns Scotus, into Aristotle’s metaphysical problems.  Together with Thomas Aquinas and William of Ockham, Duns Scotus is regarded as one of the three most important philosopher theologians of Western Europe in the High Middle Ages.  O’Fihely, taught in Milan and Padua and became censor of the press in Venice. He is  probably the first Irishman to play a major role in the new world of printing. Appointed Archbishop of Tuam by Pope Julius II in 1506, he returned to Ireland in 1512 and died the following year.  This first edition is lot 311 of the sale and is estimated at €8,000-€12,000.

    The first book by an Irish author to write for a printing press. UPDATE: THIS MADE 20,000 AT HAMMER

    The estimate of €400-€600 on three caricature silhouettes of Parnell and Kitty O’Shea may turn out to be conservative given the epic nature of the scandal of an affair which led to his downfall as leader of the Irish Parliamentary Party. The silhouettes by Cork lithographer and silhouettist Stephen O’Driscoll (c1825-1895) depict the pair at Brighton in the sunshine, on a moonlight tryst and showing Parnell trying to climb up to her balcony unaware that her husband is watching.Lot 458 is a collection of 18 O’Driscoll silhouettes highlighting local celebrities and events.  Most are captioned and some have pencilled notes identifying various individuals.  Among them are a pair of Cork butter merchants,  Sir John Arnott, brewer at Fitton St. and 91 South Mall,  B.J. Alcock, grocer 75 Patrick St., Charles K.D. Tanner M.D. Lapps Quay, William J. Cummins M.D, 11 South Mall, Matthew P. Bolster, grocer, 79 Patrick St.,  Edward G. Ashe, vet, 36 Georges St., Paul Madden, grocer and wine merchant, Bridge St.,  Richard O’Callaghan M.D. 40 South Mall and Sir George Colthurst,  6th Bart (1850-1925).   The set is estimated at €1,000-€1,500.Lot 478 is an Irish tithe print entitled The Massacre at Gortroe. The hand coloured lithographic print after a drawing by Fr. Mat Horgan depicts one of the most infamous battles of the Tithe wars in Ireland between 1830-36.  This was mostly a campaign of civil disobedience because of the imposition of tithes on the mostly catholic population for the upkeep of the Church of Ireland. There was sporadic violence.  On December 18, 1834 the massacre at Gortroe, otherwise known as the Rathcormac massacre, took place when a force of 100 soldiers fired on 250 locals on the order of Archdeacon William Ryder who was attempting to collect his tithes.  This resulted in the deaths of 20 residents.  The litho is estimated at €200-€300.There are sporting programmes including the All-Ireland Hurling Finals of 1946, ’49, ’50, ’52, ’56, ’58, ’60 and ’63, cinema posters, banknotes, cheques, literature, coins, whiskeys and a variety of other collectibles among 632 lots.  The timed auction ends from 2 pm on July 15.

    Stephen O’Driscoll (c1825-1895) Parnell and Kitty O’Shea UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400 AT HAMMER


    Wednesday, July 8th, 2020

    A first edition of The Crescent Moon, a 1913 book by the world renowned Bengali Poet Tagore Rabindranath Tagore with an introduction by the Irish poet W. B. Yeats, comes up at Fonsie Mealy’s summer collectors sale online until July 15. They met in 1912 and Yeats was instrumental in promoting Tagore to western audiences. Song Offerings was published by MacMillan and Co. and the book is estimated at 100-150.


    Sunday, May 3rd, 2020

    With everything from the theatre programme for the first production of The Playboy of the Western World at the Abbey Theatre in 1907 to the poetry of Terence McSwiney to the GAA medals of Leonard McGrath and a cache of old IRA documents from 1924-31 the online Collectors Sale by Fonsie Mealy is brimful of interest.The timed auction of 439 lots runs at The Saleroom until the evening of May 5.  It features scare modern literature items, signed copies, limited editions, manuscripts, sporting memorabilia, Republican material, cinema posters, pub memorabilia, rare Irish and Scotch whiskies, bourbon and liqueurs and even some designer handbags, purses and scarves.The Leonard McGrath collection is, at €15,000-20,000, the most expensively estimated lot.  He played a starring forward role in Galway’s first All Ireland hurling win in 1923 and also played on the winning 1925 football team.  A member of the elite group of 16 players to achieve such a success in both codes the Australian born Galway reared McGrath was, as a member of the winning Galwegians rugby team in the 1926-27 season, expelled from the GAA  for playing a foreign sport. The lot includes a large bundle of musical scores signed by Leonard McGrath and used at competitions and various singing events and Feis CeoilsA programme for the 1931 All-Ireland Hurling Final in which Cork drew with Kilkenny is estimated at €500-700.  Cork won the replay.Lot 274 is a file of IRA Army Council archives from 1924-25 and 1929-31.  It comprises document sent to and issued by the IRA’s Chief of Staff who for much of the period covered was Moss Twomey.   More than 300 documents over 500 pages give detailed accounts of activities and internal procedures.  The lot is estimated at €1,000-1,500.A scarce 1918 book of poetry by Terence MacSwiney, Battle Cries, in grey printed wrappers with proceeds in aid of the Dependents Fund has an estimate of €150-200. There is no publisher or censor’s approval.  The author was elected Lord Mayor of Cork after the murder of Tomas MacCurtain in March of 1920.  Arrested later that year and charged with having seditious documents the Lord Mayor of Cork died aged 41 on the 74th day of his hunger strike in Brixton Prison on October 25, 1920.There is a limited edition book of poetry from John Montague. A Fair House: Versions of Irish Poetry was printed in 1972.  It is being sold together with another Montague work, The Lost Notebook, with illustrations by John Verling published by the Mercier Press in 1987. The estimate is €100-150.  There are first editions by authors ranging from Liam O’Flaherty and Frank O’Connor to Ian Fleming as well as cinema posters and historic rugby programmes.The Abbey Theatre programme for Saturday, 26th January 1907  for seven nights including the first production of The Playboy by Synge is estimated at €200-300.  This was one of the most celebrated and controversial productions of the Irish theatre.  All lots can be viewed on The Saleroom.

    UPDATE: The sale realised in excess of € 120,000  on the hammer with 85% sold. The Leonard McGrath medals made 28,500 at hammer.



    Friday, May 1st, 2020

    Leonard McGrath, the Galway dual player whose medals come up at Fonsie Mealy’s online Collectors sale which runs to May 5, was also a talented singer. Lot 304 of the auction, which contains his amazing medal collection, includes a fine selection of sheet music used by McGrath at singing competitions during various Feis Ceoils and other events. The large bundle of musical scores features favourites like The Rose of Tralee, Down by the Sally Gardens, The Green Hills of Ireland, My Lagan Love and many more. McGrath won All Ireland senior hurling and football medals for Galway and was a talented rugby player, which resulted in his expulsion from the GAA. He was an athlete and, in later life, a golfer. UPDATE: LOT 304 SOLD FOR A HAMMER PRICE OF 28,500 OVER A TOP ESTIMATE OF 20,000.

    These scores are mostly inscribed by Leonard McGrath


    Friday, April 24th, 2020

    The Leonard McGrath GAA medal collection promises to be one of the top lots at Fonsie Mealy’s online Collectors sale which runs from April 27 until Tuesday, May 5. The collection of the Galway dual star includes All-Ireland, Provincial and related materials. A nine carat gold All-Ireland winners medal Celtic Cross with pierced decoration, central harp and Eire across, inscribed “All Ireland Hurling Championship 1923, won by Galway – Leonard McGrath,” is typical of a collection estimated at 15,000-20,000.

    Born in Queensland, Australia Leonard McGrath returned as a young child to Galway, where he was reared. He qualified as a teacher in 1918 and in 1922 was a member of the Galway Senior Hurling XV, winning a Connaught title. He was subsequently chosen and starred at full forward to win Galway’s first Hurling All Ireland. He showed his versatility in sports by also been chosen to represent his adopted county in football and played on the winning 1925 team, which also was the county’s first title in Football. He became the county’s first dual star, and only player to achieve success in both codes. McGrath is a member of an elite group of only 16 players to achieve this accolade, in the G.A.A.’s long history.

    He also played rugby and was a member of the winning Galwegians team beating U.C.G. 3-0 in the 1926-27 Season. This brought with it a caveat, he was duly expelled from the G.A.A. for playing a ‘Foreign Sport’.

    The sale will include literature, first editions, sporting memorabilia, Republican material, pub memorabilia and a wide variety of lots to interest all collectors.

    The Leonard McGrath medal collection. UPDATE: LOT 304 SOLD FOR A HAMMER PRICE OF 28,500 OVER A TOP ESTIMATE OF 20,000.