Hess-Divo's medal auction which we reported on weeks ago has finally revealed its results, which indicate the ongoing strength of the market for interesting gallantry medals.
Of the two highest-rated lots which we focussed on, an Imperial Order of St Anna made by Albert Keibel in St. Petersburg in 1862 from painted enamelled gold.
Of the third model of the medal (as influenced by Nicholas I) it makes reference to Anna, who (according to apocryphal gospels) was the mother of the Virgin Mary, and hence the maternal grandmother of Jesus.
It is a first-class award, and in exceptional condition and was expected to sell for CHF4,000 in the Zurich auction, but actually sold for CHF6,000, showing its strength as an entry-level investment.
Russian collectibles in particular are increasing in value as the number of citizens with substantial disposable income in the country is tending to increase.
Top lot was a rare Imperial and Royal Order of the White Eagle in the form of a breast star. Breast stars had been approved for awarding to non-Christians (who were naturally reluctant to wear cross-style medals) from 1844 in Russia, and this was one of the earliest examples.
With a diameter of 87.7mm, silver plated and partially enamelled, it is in excellent condition considering its rarity, and was expected to bring CHF7,500. But bidders were braver, and pushed it onwards to CHF9,500.
Medal collectors will now be eagerly awaiting the results of the Galerie Numismatique sale, which we will bring you shortly.
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