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Angus’ Highlights | February 2023

March 7, 2023

In February we offer you literally a taste of the orient. Lot 78 was a rare discovery found while searching through a recent local property. A cup made from zitan, which is a rare wood sourced in the tropical forests of Indochina. It is a member of the rosewood family and its deep colour and silky surface were thought to be ideal for intricate carving and furniture making.

For a time Zitan wood was kept almost exclusively for the Chinese Imperial Court from the Ming to Qing Dynasty. Sadly the demand meant nearly all the trees were felled, however they are not thankfully extinct. A libation cup or wine cup is here beautifully carved from one piece of zitan and the bowl is a single magnolia flower held within a lattice of both prunus and magnolia branches. It is a delight to hold and deserves a prominent shelf to sit on. This example was made probably in the 17th century, although dating such items can be tricky without dendrochronological tests! Estimated at £500-800 it should find a little interest I hope.

From a Scottish deceased estate we have a large consignment this month of gold and other jewellery. There are many pretty necklaces and bracelets in both 9, 14 and 18 carat gold. I personally like lot 110, an attractive chain bracelet held together with the classical “Greek Key” motif. Simple yet effective. This is an excellent opportunity to buy gold jewellery in excellent condition and currently priced well below what you would likely pay at a High Street jeweller, so perhaps treat that new Valentine you discovered last week!

There is also a wide selection of silver this month, including a very attractive chestnut or bread basket in silver gilt. Made by the Atkin Brothers and hallmarked at the Assay office in Sheffield in 1918, it echoes a popular Georgian design and remain is excellent condition. The boat shaped body is carefully cut through with fretwork and sits solidly on four legs. Currently a steal at £300-500.

Furniture this month includes a dramatic Biedermeier office secretary cabinet, probably made in Vienna, Austria. This will look splendid, solid, effective and elegant in any hall or drawing room. Found hidden in a Scottish Border barn, with a little tender loving care it could be quickly returned to pride of place…and with so many concealed drawers to hide things! Lot 179 is currently on offer at £400.

As usual we have a wide variety of items in our monthly Art, Antiques and Collectors sale. As well as silver, jewellery, furniture and works of art, you will find a very large choice of fine and household ceramics and glass. A personal favourite this month is a pretty Minton’s majolica tea service, made in the Victorian age, each piece is formed to look like it is made from a lily pad. Charming and colourful Lot 72 is well worth a look.

Do of course contact us if you would like our valuation team to look at your Art or Collectibles. We are collecting now for the March auction and will happily consider individual pieces or entire households or barns.

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