All Hallows, the former seminary in Drumcondra, Dublin had hoped to raise up to €60,000 for a 15th-century Flemish 'Book of Hours' during the auction of items from its collection at Sheppard's earlier this month. However the illuminated manuscript on vellum, with text in French and Latin, failed to attract a single bid.
Sheppard’s has since managed to find a post-auction buyer and has now confirmed that the book has been sold to “an Irish private client” for €19,000.
All Hallows, now a college of DCU, has announced that it is closing down and has begun selling off various assets including art and rare books. The college said that, following the auction, its remaining archive was “potentially of great value academically but not financially”.
Separately, All Hallows said gardaí had been notified about missing rare books and prints which may have been stolen in the past and could be worth up to €20,000. All Hallows College is owned by a trust under the auspices of the Vincentian Order. Following the steep decline in religious vocations, the college began to accept lay students in the 1980s, thus ending its long tradition as a seminary.