Review of June 2011 Maritime Auction in Exeter, Devon

Published 21st June 2011

A panoramic view of Port Mahon, Minorca, by Anton Schranz (1769-1839)

The June 2011 Maritime auction brought many people to the Exeter saleroom on the day (15th June 2011), with a wide variety on offer for the specialist collector.

The main highlight of the day was generated by the oil on canvas of Mahon Harbour, Menorca, by Anton Schranz (1769-1839). The topographically accurate view generated a great deal of pre sale interest, with many recognising the view even after a change of 200 years between the period naval ships of the 1800s and the modern cruise ships seen today.

The telephone lines took on the bidding to exceed the upper estimate and continued to surprise everyone up to £50,000. So much of a surprise, in fact, that the vendor attending the sale had to sit down with the bidding at £30,000!

Anthony Amos (1950-2010). The Trawler Fleet, oil on board, sold for £2,700.

Anthony Amos (1950-2010). The Trawler Fleet oil on board, sold for £2,700.

Another surprise amongst the picture section was the interest in the works of Anthony Amos (1950-2010). Working without brushes, utilising rags and his fingers, his works are extremely popular in the Southwest. Many people visited Anthony Amos in his gallery to see him paint, and this would seem to be the reason of his popularity. Both the room and telephone bids were strong on the day to push the modest estimate of £80-120 to an astounding £2,700.

Nelson memorabilia continues to be strong in the current market, especially period pieces such as the Trafalgar engraved decanter. The copper wheel engraving of the early 19th century almost doubled the upper estimate to reach £580.

The market for diving helmets and equipment also remains buoyant, with the Chilean copper helmet and Siebe Gorman suit reaching above the upper estimate to sell in the room for £1,700.

The precision engineering of early navigational and scientific instruments attracted many with the quality of the pieces on offer in the sale. This was shown by the fiercely contested Victorian pocket barometer, selling for £330 and the microscopes in the sale at £800 and £1,500, both selling for double the upper estimate.

Once again by collating and collecting together marine and nautical themed antiques for a specialist sale, Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood offer a wider range of services and sales for our clients requirements. This in turn has yielded greater results year on year and continues to be popular with both vendors and buyers.

Invitations to consign entries for the next Maritime sale are now open. For further information about our next Maritime auction, please contact Brian Goodison-Blanks on (01404) 510000.


  • Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood
  • Okehampton Street, Exeter, Devon
  • Maritime
  • Admiral Lord Nelson
  • Battle of Trafalgar
  • Diving Helmets

Subscribe to catalogue alerts & news

Select your interests