Bonhams' Fine British & European Glass & Paperweights auction on Wednesday on December 15 achieved some record prices. In the end, the sale totalled £574,008 for 355 lots with 87 per cent sold by value.
Besides the strong presence of private collectors and dealers there were also institutions represented: The V&A in London and the Corning Museum of Glass, New York, which each secured a number of items in the sale.
Among the paperweights the top item was Lot 243, a rare Pantin magnum salamander paperweight estimated to sell for £15,000 to £20,000 which made £42,000 ($66,000), a World Record price for a paperweight of this kind.
Two of the highest prices achieved were for items from the Albert Hartshorne collection, Lot 4, an important and early large punch-bowl and cover, circa 1685, estimated to sell for £10,000-15,000. It sold for a sparkling £45,600. Lot 5, an early English façon de Venise wine glass, circa 1690, was estimated to make £2,000-3,000 and sold for £13,200.
The Hartshorne Collection, which featured 66 lots, sold for a total of £138,000 - proving itself as a great alternative investment.
Two other sale highlights were the Heemskerk flask, lot 208, which sold for £43,200, the best price achieved for a bottle of this type in recent years, and lot 220, the Sang signed goblet which sold for £16,200. Both prices were well above expectations for these types of glasses.
Simon Cottle, Departmental Head of Glass and Continental Porcelain at Bonhams said: "As the only international auction house to offer stand alone fine glass sales in the UK it gives me great pleasure to see the growing strength of the fine glass market which once again we lead in Britain having overtaken our competitors in 2007."
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