Although perhaps less opulent, lot 1209, a South German Langes Messer (which translates to “one-handed sword”) is equally breathtaking. A certain finesse and workmanship were required to join the blade to the hilt. One-handed swords in this superb, courtly quality are otherwise only found in museum collections. Dating from 1530 to 1540, the sword carries an estimate of €12,000-€24,000.
From the same epoch, and just as worthy of note, comes a heavy north Italian helmet of Savoyard type, listed as lot number 1132. Unsurprisingly, this piece of armor is also known as a death’s head helmet. The round eye openings would have made attackers look absolutely terrifying and mysterious on the battlefield, at the same time protecting them from muskets. Dating from around 1600, it is set to rake in €10,000-€20,000.
Fine Antique and Modern Firearms
The procession of fascinating pieces continues on Wednesday, November 24 with the Fine Antique and Modern Firearms auction. Comprising almost 900 lots, it will cause a stir, and not just among gun collectors: Hermann Historica will offer not one, not two, but three pieces by the artisan known as the master of the animal-head scroll.
The first of the trio is a deluxe hunting wheellock rifle with the Austrian master craftsman’s typical lavish carvings: indigenous and exotic wild animals hide among the leafy vines, accompanied by mythical creatures. This firearm is estimated at €35,000-€70,000.
Lot 2069 represents a pair of his deluxe wheellock pistols, adorned with profusely carved floral decor, along with lion’s heads, grotesque masks and silver-inlaid lock plates. The pair of pistols carries an estimate of €20,000-€40,000. Most of his rifles can be found in major international collections, such as the exhibits of the Metropolitan Museum in New York. His works are therefore rarely available on the market.
Orders and Military Collectibles until 1918
The supremely diverse catalog of the Orders and Military Collectibles until 1918 auction showcases amazing pieces and fascinating collections. The more than 500 lots will be sold on Thursday, November 25. Buyers can expect the usual wide range of international insignia.
A Cross 1st class with Oak Leaves of the Finnish Order of the Cross of Liberty is bound to be one of the biggest draws. Awarded fewer than 100 times, this decoration – lot number 3005 – is estimated at €1,000-€2,000.
Empress Elisabeth of Austria had a penchant for a different type of decoration, namely precious jewels and the finest gowns. So, once again, her fans will delight in the objects in this auction. While the Empress’ sudden demise is something that her devotees would prefer to forget, the intriguing artefact that appears as lot 3138 is having none of it. The right-hand black silk glove worn by the Empress on the day of her brutal assassination in 1898 will be offered with an estimate of €12,000-€24,000.
Hermann Historica is thrilled to announce it will offer in the November 25 auction a highly unusual circa-1906 uniform for a drummer in the Imperial Russian Army as lot number 3178. The gold trim, red cuffs and piping are a particularly effective contrast to the dark cloth. Discerning uniform aficionados are sure to pounce on this outfit, which is estimated at €6,000-€12,000.
The current rate of exchange is €1 = $1.15.
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