While not wanting to mention the forthcoming December festivities prematurely, many of us may be getting the chance to spend the season with loved ones after a long and stressful interlude. The beauty of auctions is you will always find interesting gifts, and as all auctioneers now conduct online sales, you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home to bid.
Laois auctioneer Sean Eacrett will host a pre-owned fashion auction today, featuring 700 lots including shoes by Jimmy Choo, Valentino, Prada, Stella McCartney and Ralph Lauren. The sale also features six Chanel lots including four pairs of shoes, a belt and rather nice Audrey Hepburn-style straw hat – perfect if you're planning to swan around Rome on a scooter (€60-€100).
On Sunday and Tuesday, Kells-based auctioneer Damien Matthews will host a large sale of in excess of more than 1,000 lots. From a single owner collection is an original Easter 1916 Irish Proclamation, which was purchased at Adam's Independence sale in 2006 (€120,000-€140,000). Also of political interest is an original framed note and envelope of the last written words of Irish revolutionary Michael Collins (€7,000-€12,000). The provenance of this item is interesting as it comes from the library of the late Donall Ó Móráin, former chief executive of Gael Linn and the RTÉ Authority, gifted to him by his uncle Fionán Lynch, an associate of Collins and minister for education at the first Dáil.
The sale is also heaving with art, including works by John Behan, and originally from the Luggala estate is Three Men with Curragh, by Edward Delaney (€3,000-€5,000).
Cavan-based auctioneer Victor Mee will hold an online-only Christmas decorative interiors sale on Wednesday and Thursday, with more than 900 interior pieces including art, prints and antique furniture. Highlights include a 1940s French tanned leather upholstered sofa (€500-€600) and a pair of good-quality hand-dyed, leather-upholstered, wing-backed armchairs (€1,000-€2,000). A rare, illuminated exterior, double-sided Guinness clock from the 1950s is listed at €1,500-€2,500, while a framed original Boston Daily Globe headline front page of "Titanic Sinks" is seeking €400-€600.
Meanwhile on December 7th and 8th, at the Talbot Hotel in Stillorgan, Fonsie Mealy will host its Christmas rare books and collectors sale for those in search of presents of mind. It includes the library of the late Prof Michael Herity and other items of general interest.
The top lot in a most interesting catalogue is from 1570, a first-edition, second issue of Ortelius Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, known as the atlas that changed the world. It was the world’s first atlas (€40,000 - €60,000). And most relevant in the current climate across the pond is another document that shaped the world: A United States declaration of independence, an original engraved facsimile copy – limited to a run of 200 from July 4th, 1776 – and only one of a dozen in private hands. The copy has direct provenance to distinguished Irish-American attorney and politician Charles O’Connor (€20,000-€30,000).