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East Africa, Iraq Top Knight IPMS

Lyn Knight’s June 13 IPMS auction took off with more than an average hiss and a roar. As with all top world paper auctions in recent months large sums of money are being paid for high grade rarities of most, although not all countries.

Among the 773 lots of offer two tied for the top price-realized of $38,400.

First up was an extraordinary East African Currency Board 10 florins (1 pound) dated 1 May 1920 (P-10). Unpriced in any condition in The Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, this rarity came graded “PMG Ch. UNC 64 good color.” As Joel Shafer commented in the auction catalog, “When I first saw this note, I had to remind myself to keep breathing.” He then added, “A masterpiece for the best collections.” This observation is by no means an overstatement. It explains why the note easily exceeded its $10,000-$20,000 estimate.

Top equal price I: East African Currency Board 10 florins (1 pound) of 1 May 1920 (P-10) that realized $38,400 in PMG Ch. UNC 64 at Knight Auctions IPMS sale in June. (Image courtesy Lyn Knight Auctions)

For a while it appeared that this price might not be matched let alone exceeded until a rare Iraqi 5 dinars of 1 July 1931 arrived on the block (P-4). The grade of PMG VF 25 is the best of four in the population report of this King Faisal I issue. When the bidding finally matched the price of the East African note, it lay at the top end of the original $25,000-$35,000 estimate.

Top equal price II: rare Iraqi 5 dinars of 1 July 1931 (P-4) that also sold for $38,400 but in PMG VF 25. (Image courtesy Lyn Knight Auctions)

Three Philippine rarities filled the next three spots in the price stakes. First up was a 500 pesos Treasury Certificate of 1918 (P-67) – the highest denomination of the series with only 40,000 printed. It graded a respectable PMG VF 20 and on an estimate of $6,500-10,000 had no problems in being bid-up to $15,600.

Sought-after Philippine 500 pesos Treasury Certificate of 1918 (P-67) which fetched $15,600 in collectable PMG VF 20. (Image courtesy Lyn Knight Auctions)

Then came arguably the most historically important lot of the sale: an extremely rare, issued, Republica Filipina 1 peso with serial number and hand signed by Pedro A. Paterno (P-A26a) “Ley 30 November 1898. – 24 April 1899.” Very few pieces had been issued by the new republic before American forces overran the country. SCWPM gives a valuation of $11,000 in VF. The example on offer was graded PMG AU 53 “stained” and on an estimate of $7,500- $12,500 may well have been a something of a steal at $14,400.

Face and back of extremely rare, high-grade issued, Republica Filipina 1 peso hand signed and with serial number c. 1898-1899 (P-A26a). In PMG AU 53 it sold above its estimate with $14,400. (Image courtesy Lyn Knight Auctions)

The third top-priced Philippine note was a National Bank 100 pesos of 1920 (P-50). Graded PMG VF 25 it sold for almost double its upper-estimate withEast $13,200.

The total realized was $1,001,654. Full lot details and individual prices-realized can be found at https://www.lynknight.com/.

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