News-Antique.com - Apr 12,2010 - The forthcoming Baldwin’s London auction promises to be a landmark event with four exceptional groups of coins and medals being sold alongside the Michael Hall collection. Due to be held at the CIPFA Conference Centre in London on the 4th and 5th of May this sale is packed full of quality, rare items and is one of the most diverse and varied auction that Baldwin’s have conducted for many years. Pre-sale interest from both collectors and dealers globally has been extensive and Baldwin’s are expecting some lively bidding both in the room and online.
The first day of the sale is dedicated almost entirely to the first part of the Michael Hall Collection of Medallic Portraits dating from the Renaissance to the Nineteenth Century. These miniature works of art are the product of 40 years of relentless and dedicated collecting by New York antique dealer and fine art connoisseur, Michael Hall. The sheer volume and variety of this collection is quite astounding and the passionate nature of the collector can be seen throughout. Amongst the numerous stand-out pieces are some extraordinary lots, including a 1447 cast bronze medal by Pisanello depicting the scholar, Cecilia Gonzaga (lot 7), and a 1544 silver medal of The Trinity or Moritz-pfennig, sculpted by Hans Reinhardt the Elder for Duke Morritz (lot 418). The first day concludes with a selection of British and World commemorative medals, including, an 1872, George II large silver medal depicting the busts of George II and Queen Caroline which was created as a personal gift from the King for foreign princes and dignitaries (lot 1022).
Day two of the auction begins with a fascinating section of Ancient coinage, including 10 lots from the well publicised Bishop’s Wood Hoard (lots 1152-1162), followed by the exceptional Reverend Strickland Neville Rolfe Collection, which, like the Bishop’s Wood Hoard, has remained untouched since the late 19th century. The hoard consists of 1661 pieces, almost entirely bronze coins of the Constantinian family, together with the original earthenware pot and the custom made cabinet in which the coins have been housed. The majority of the coins were minted at Lugdunum (Lyons), Treveri (Trier) and Arelate (Arles). Rome and Aquileia are also present, as well as a sprinkling of coins from Siscia, Thessalonica, Heraclea, Constantinople, Nicomedia, Cyzicus and Antioch. Included with the hoard is a reprint of the article from the Numsimatic Chronicle of 1896 and a reprint of ‘Notes on a Great Hoard of Roman Coins found at Bishop’s Wood in 1895’ from the “Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society”, vol. XIX, both written by Mary Bagnall-Oakeley.
The Rolfe collection contains many extremely rare and desirable items, including two key George III Pattern Crowns. The pattern “Incorrupta” crown (lot 1405), only one of eighteen known to exist in silver, and the “Three Graces” crown, one of the most important and majestic coins of the English series (lot 1406). A small colonial selection includes a pewter Continental Dollar (lot 1589), some stunningly preserved Rosa Americana