Patek Philippe antique music box brings sweet sounds to Maine auction

We couldn't resist taking another look at the Maine auction at which an Italian games table took most of the attention, as there were some fascinating unique collectibles and jewellery on offer.

As has frequently been the case in recent years, the high quality Asian collectibles drew some startlingly strong bidding.

Often the performance of Korean collectibles has been overlooked in the glare of Chinese collectibles, but here a low painted screen with eight panels hurtled past its estimate of $1,000-$1,500 to reach an impressive price of $28,750 after a furious internet battle.

Pair of Faberge silver candelabra
The pair of Faberge silver candelabra


A Chinese collectible still topped this, however. This was a 19th century jade seal, still housed in its original cloisonné box which brought $37,950.

There were some fascinating items for jewellery collectors too, both jewellery proper and some spectacular pieces of decorative art.

An 18k gold cup from roughly a century ago was always going to draw bidders given its Tiffany & Co hallmark, and it achieved $8,625, but it was another great name of jewellery responsible for a silver cherub candelabra pair dating to 1891 which drew real excitement. The Faberge fashioned piece achieved $57,500.

Even though there were no great watches in the sale, there was a section which fascinated watch collectors. This was the section for antique mechanical devices, especially music boxes.

Patek Philippe miniature tortoiseshell & gold music box
Patek Philippe miniature tortoiseshell & gold music box

An 1895 music box crafted by Jacot in the Swiss 10 Air cylinder form was offered in its original rosewood veneer case, and impressed collectors bid $13,800and another Swiss music box dating from even earlier (1878) by Ami Rivenc & Co. of Geneva made $23,000.

Star of the show, however, was a tiny music box crafted in tortoiseshell and gold with a mechanical bird by a watch manufacturer everyone will know: Patek Philippe. This achieved $40,250.

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