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Snail makes a fast finish...

4th July 2018

A selection of over 560 lots of silver and objects of vertu comprised the first day of Lawrences’ Summer Fine Art auction series on July 3rd and enthusiasm throughout the sale was reflected in a host of strong prices.

Eighty-eight pieces of modern (1974-5) silvergilt cutlery in the pretty `pierced vine` pattern made £7190 whilst a seal top spoon from Norwich made in c.1610-1630 was gobbled up by bidders who competed to £10,370 to secure it.

A set of four entrée dishes by the celebrated Georgian silversmith Paul Storr dated from 1804 and doubled hopes to make £7560 , to furnish another elegant table, two dozen silvergilt wine and champagne goblets made in the mid-1970s raised a cheer at £7560. An impressive (59cm high) Victorian cast centrepiece by Edward and John Barnard (1861) was skilfully modelled as a capstan draped with the instruments of war. After an appropriate bidding `battle`, it was bought for £5120.

Five very different objects in the section of vertu also sold well. Two portrait miniatures depicting children of the 5th Earl of Carlisle (and consigned by a descendant)  made £2560; a lacquered papier-mache box depicting a simple rustic scene made £1950; a rare French silvergilt marriage casket, 7.7cm long, was thought to date from c.1600 and made £1520; and a fine quality novelty vesta case in the form of a very realistically cast snail (6.8cm) was made by Thomas Johnson in 1884. The bidding was far from `sluggish` as it exceeded hopes of £1200-1500 to race away  - the lucky bidder shelled out £3290 to buy it.  The sale exceeded £220,000 with very little unsold.

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