19th century Gabriel weathervane makes $1.3m

A 19th century weathervane in the shape of the Angel Gabriel has sold for $1.3m at Sotheby's.

The piece led the January 23 sale of the Stephen and Petra Levin collection of American folk art in New York.

Angel Gabriel weathervane
The weathervane was made in New England

Sotheby's comments: "The Gabriel Weathervane, also known as 'Fame,' is considered the most desirable and rare form in the iconography of American weathervanes.

"This figure embodies the magic of the Heavens and the highest personification of human fantasy."

Produced by an unknown maker in New England, the work is of exceptional quality.

However, it's far from the most valuable weathervane ever sold. The record is the $5.8m paid by Ralph Lauren executive Jerry Lauren for a Native American figure at Sotheby's in 2008.

A carving of a baseball figure by Samuel Anderson Robb realised $550,000.

The work was executed in the 1890s and depicts an early league player, although the team is not identified.

Baseball was established as America's national pastime by this point, although it was a much rougher game than today, with fights a regular occurrence.

Robb's carvings were in high demand during his own lifetime and his workshop was the biggest in New York. He is best known for his carvings of Native Americans for cigar stores.

In 2013, a cigar store Indian figure attributed to him sold for a record $250,000 at Guyette and Deeter.

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