Loose diamonds, sapphires and emeralds in Adam’s sale

Endless possibilities for jewellery designers with gems from estate of prominent jeweller

A sale of the contents of 28 Fitzwilliam Square in Dublin 2, will be held in an online auction by Adam’s of Blackrock – currently open – which will close on Tuesday, April 13th.

Three-quarters of the 450 lots come from the late Dr Charlie Meenan’s residence on the Georgian square, and were collected since 1921, when his parents purchased the four-storey pile after seeing an advertisement in The Irish Times. The property is one of the very few Georgian houses to have remained a private residence since it was first constructed in the early part of the 19th century.

Highlights of the sale include lot 61, a Regency convex mirror surmounted by an eagle (€1,000-€1,500); lot 64, a 19th century Irish giltwood pier mirror with ornamental birds and dogs (€1,000-€1,500); lot 86, a George III four-door mahogany breakfront library bookcase (€2,000-€4,000); and lot 65, a Regency mahogany console table on Nelson turned legs with ebony inlaid frieze (€2,000-€3,000).

Art includes work by George Gillespie, Herman Koekkoek, Irene Brow and James Arthur O'Connor. A particularly lovely piece of silver is lot 246, which is an early 20th century rococo dish with empty cartouches (€300-€400) and a George V Irish four-piece tea service profusely chased with flowers and foliage (€1,000-€1,500).



The sale also includes the estate of a prominent jeweller. In a time when so many gemstones are enhanced, there are 30 lots in the form of packets containing loose diamonds, sapphires, rubies and emeralds "that haven't been opened in 40 years", according to Martina Noonan of Adam's. A particularly lovely offering, is that of three heart-shaped rubies weighing about five carats in total (lot 303, €250-€350) and there are endless possibilities with what a jewellery designer could do with lot 302, which is a parcel of 23 small pear-shaped emeralds, also weighing about five carats (€250-€350).

A Czech cello (lot 284, €80-€120) is listed along with four violins, the highlight of which is an English, full-sized model circa 1780 with pernambuco bow – the wood of choice for professionals – which needs some restoration (lot 282, €1,200-€1,800).

Also running this weekend is a live online auction by Damien Matthews of the contents of Ardlaois, in Blackrock, Co Louth, which was the home of the late Professor Kieran Taaffe. A lifelong collector, Taaffe travelled widely as both vice principal and Dean of International Affairs at Dublin Institute of Technology, and this is reflected in the sale which has in excess of 2,000 lots.

Stored in his residence, adjoining buildings, stores and garages, the auction has a colossal array of Irish and International art, including works by Nathaniel Hone, Charles Brady and Con Campbell along with old silver, antique furniture, rugs, mirrors, books household items and even two motorcars.