coins that opened the second day of the auction was a most spectacular selection comprising material of the highest quality and rarity, fresh to the market. Lot 1003 was the first of many of the Russian lots to achieve a result befitting its brilliant pedigree. The gold ducat of Sophia as Regent for Ivan V and Peter I was originally sold in the legendary Hess Hermitage Duplicate auction of 1932, as part of the wider Bolshevik dispersal of nationalised antiques from several palaces of the Russian Tsars and numerous private mansions, through European auction houses. During the 1930s Hess held two separate auctions on behalf of the Communist Soviet government to dispose of duplicate coins held by state museums to raise funding for Soviet land projects. Many coins were sold through these sales that were not duplicates and, although it is not know if this particular item was one of them, the lot achieved an amazing US$61,425 against its estimate of US$7,500.
Lot 1005, a Peter I gold Ducat was also a standout piece, achieving a staggering US$269,100 against a pre-sale estimate of US$75,000. This particular variety is amongst the rarest of the Petrine Ducat series and it is uncommon to find one in such good condition, having been brilliantly preserved. They are the rarest of coins because they were widely used and so few were retained, this explains why so many specimens are so obviously worn. Lot 1043, a Catherine I 2 Roubles, also attained an exceptional result selling for US$152,100 against a pre-sale estimate of US$50,000. Catherine I only reigned for 2 years and so there are very few examples of coins that depict her, this particular specimen was one of the highest quality.
Lot 1048, a Peter II gold Ducat, was without doubt one of the absolute highlights of the sale. The provenance of the coin was astonishing and this was reflected in the realised price of US$234,000 against an estimate of US$75,000. An attempt was made to sell the coin twice at auctions of lots from the collection of the Grand Duke George Mikhailovich, once in 1939 and once in 1950 when Baldwin’s had its first involvement with the coin. The Hess sale in 1939 was scheduled for October 25th in Switzerland but was cancelled in the wake of the German invasion of Poland on 1st September 1939. The coin was successfully sold in the 3rd July 1950 auction, held by Christie’s London, which was catalogued for Christie’s by Albert Baldwin, father of the current Chairman, Edward Baldwin. At the time interest in Russian coinage in Europe was minimal and, despite the pedigree of the coins, the entire auction achieved a total of £10,929 with this particular coin selling for £11. Lot 1053, another highlight, has also passed through the hands of Baldwin’s staff before this event. The 1730 Anna gold Ducat was first catalogued by Edward Baldwin for Christie’s, London for their sale of Important Russian Coins and Medals held in 1979. This was the