Lord Nelson chimneypiece auction to make $45,880 at Bonhams?

A connection with Lord Nelson always boosts an item's attractiveness to buyers. So we anticipate a chimneypiece, believed to be from Horatio's home, to achieve a considerable sum at Bonhams this month.

The white marble Egypto-Roman revival chimneypiece comes from Merton Place, the southern England home that Nelson bought in 1801 for himself and his mistress, Lady Hamilton.

Nelson spent his leave at the residence and had plans to retire there once his days at sea were over.

Nelson regularly wrote of his plans to improve Merton Place, suggesting that the early 18th century chimneypiece was one of his earliest modifications.

Lord Nelson chimneypiece
Lord Nelson's £30,000 chimneypiece


Nelson died at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. Lady Hamilton attempted to preserve Merton Place as a tribute to him but was forced to sell the house and its contents after accruing large debts in her efforts.

Artefacts connected with the homes of famous names make for wonderfully unique, and valuable collectibles. We have pieces of wallpaper from the only home Abraham Lincoln ever owned on offer to you right now.

Fergus Lyons, director of Bonhams' furniture department, remarked: "We are delighted to be offering this highly sculptural chimneypiece which epitomises the zenith of Regency style and is one of only a few recorded examples of its kind."

The chimneypiece is estimated at £20,000-30,000 ahead of the Fine English Furniture and Works of Art sale on June 13.

A pistol-sword, once owned by a friend of Lord Nelson, is coming to auction in July with a £15,000 high estimate.

Signed letters by Horatio have grown in value from £1,800 ($2,835) in 2000 to £9,500 ($14,970) in 2011, at a rate of 16.33% pa.

We have a signed handwritten note from Nelson available today for £8,500 ($13,410), £1,000 below the index listing.



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