Published 29th June 2020
The forthcoming Fine Sale does seem to contain something of a menagerie which includes a group of 'folk art' decoy ducks comprising a pair of Mallard (FS46/662), a Gadwall (FS46/663), a Teal (FS46/664) and a Pintail (FS46/665) and elsewhere you can take your choice of any number of silver novelties, among them a Victorian vesta case (FS46/78) in the form of a horse's head, a pig vesta case (FS46/80) and a Sampson Mordan & Co owl shaped pin cushion (FS46/81).
However, you will need to spend a little more if you want to bag yourself the pair of Chester silver pheasants (FS46/117), bearing import marks for Berthold Muller they are estimated at £1,000-£1,200.
Also from Germany is a pewter mounted stoneware hunting stein (FS46/562) moulded with huntsmen, figures, dogs, bears and stags, in great order for something made in the 17th century.
With lockdown easing. perhaps we can all look forward to a holiday though perhaps it is a little early to be gazing at the Ducal Palace and Grand Canal in Venice as depicted in the oil catalogued as Circle of William Clarkson Stanfield (FS46/468), but with hopes of £3,000-£5,000. Perhaps a staycation in Scotland as reflected by Robert Houston with his renderings of Iona (FS46/477) and Mull (FS46/476)?
Who knows, you might even consider Brighton, where Martha Gunn (FS46/566) plied her trade as a Bathing Woman who immersed individuals for the health benefits in the salty English Channel. She included amongst her patrons the Prince of Wales, often depicted drinking ale and especially gin, but you have to forgive her that particular habit. After all, if you spent all day in the sea, you might want something to warm the cockles.
However, if you prefer a more refined lady and cocktails are your favourite tipple then why not splash out £2,000-£3,000 on a sapphire and diamond cocktail cluster ring (FS46/293)? Somewhat indulgent to wear jewellery specifically for drinking, but hey why not?
As ever, the sale concludes with a robust furniture section headed up by an Italian tortoiseshell, ebony and coromandel architectural cabinet (FS46/979), though more affordable is a pair of Georgian mahogany and leather club armchairs (FS46/953). There is something rather inviting about shiny worn leather that reflects two and a half centuries of comfort. Absolutely fit for purpose, good to go and sensibly estimated.