Whyte’s Sale of History, Literature & Collectables on Saturday (16th April) showed, yet again, that there is still plenty of life left in the collecting world if the quality is there. Prices generally were at or well above their pre-sale estimates with the only surprise, for me, being Lot .41. Copy of the 1803 Robert Emmet Proclamation which sold for only €25,000, below the lower end of its pre-sale estimate of €30,000 – €50,000. Although its condition could kindly be described as distressed, I would have thought that its sheer rarity would have had collectors fighting over it.
Amongst other lots to sell well were items of weaponry and militaria. Here, again, the star item Lot.296. The Thompson Submachine Gun failed to reach its hefty estimate of €10,000 – €15,000 and was knocked down for €7,200 – still not a bad price! Amongst the coins and banknotes there were several surprises including Lot.469. A Hiberno Norse silver penny with a pre-sale estimate of €3,500 – €4,500 which sold for €12,000, and Lot.585. A Lady Lavery 20 pound note with an estimate of €1,000 – €1,500 which sold for €6,000.
Lot.141. A signed photograph of the explorer Ernest Shackleton fetched €540 as against its pre-sale estimate of €150 – €250. Letterpress and lithographic posters also sold well with Lot.374. a not uncommon, CIE 1950s poster realising €520 (est.€200-€300) and Lot.377. A colourful An Tostal poster going for €1,550 (est.€100-€150).
The full catalogue with prices realised is available here: http://www.whytes.com/i7.asp?Auction=20110416&Lot=1