Neil Armstrong’s passport and rare pink sapphires for auction this week

Sales results and forthcoming auctions

Auction results

July 9th, Sotheby's English Literature, History, Children's Books and Illustration online auction. Irish woman Mary Dorgan's 140 letters concerning the domestic life of Winston Churchill, €1,251 (includes buyer's premium); The Beatles original management contract with Brian Epstein, 1962, €305,700 (includes buyer's premium).

Forthcoming auctions

Saturday, July 13th, Aidan Foley Schoolhouse Auction Rooms, Doneraile Co Cork, 543 lots to include rugs, occasional furniture and lighting. See

Wednesday, July 17th, O'Reilly's Francis St, Fine Jewellery, Watches and Silver Auction, to include two padparadscha sapphire rings. The padparadscha is the rarest of all sapphires and the name derives from the Sinhalese word for "aquatic lotus blossom" due to their pink to orange hues. The sale features lot 198, a 4.13ct central stone surrounded by diamonds (€2,500-€3,000) and lot 399, a 2.65ct sapphire with diamond cluster (€7,000-€8,500) which is remarkably similar to the engagement ring of Princess Eugenie from the British royal family. In addition, the sale features a number of rubies to celebrate the July birthstone, including a 19th-century ruby and diamond brooch with a central 5.28ct ruby (€16,000-€19,000). See

Saturday, July 20th, Sotheby's New York Space Exploration Sale to include a collection of passports belonging to Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. The passports feature some Irish stamps. The astronaut, who was notoriously private, visited Tralee in 1997 at the request of then tánaiste Dick Spring, and was made a freeman of the town, in addition to having a rose-lined walkway through Tralee Town Park named the Neil Armstrong Way in his honour ($30,000-$50,000). See


Tuesday, July 23rd Fonsie Mealy Chatsworth Summer Fine Art Auction Castlecomer Co Kilkenny to include military items, maritime paintings, Irish English and European art, furniture, silver and Chinese porcelain. See

Forthcoming Fairs

Sunday, July 14th, Antiques, Vintage and Collectables Fair Glenview Hotel Co Wicklow. See

Sunday, July 14th, The Kerry Antiques Fair Ballygarry House Hotel Tralee now in its 29th year.

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle, a contributor to The Irish Times, writes about property, fine arts, antiques and collectables