There is just one word to describe the results of Heritage’s NYINC world coins sale. That word is, “Wow!”
The total realized for the Jan. 6-7 rostrum auction was $15,280,183. Of that, over $8,000,000 was achieved at the Jan.7 Platinum Night. All told, 15 items took in excess of $100,000. A further 258 managed between $10,000 and $99,999.
Top price of $336,000 was achieved by a 42 mm, 40.15 g gold Netherlands East Indies proof pattern ducaton of 1728 struck for Holland (KM-71a, cf. Dav-417, Scholten-31). This is an off-metal strike of the silver rider issue presumably produced as a presentation piece. It had certainly been well looked after for almost 300 years and had no problems in achieving a PR64 NGC grade.
As far as Heritage is aware, this price is the highest paid for any Netherlands East Indies coin ever sold. It far surpasses the $126,500 realized by a 1728 gold ducaton rider at a Heritage sale in 2008.
Historic British coins continue to run hot. Nine figured among the leading 15. Second-highest price of the sale went to a further off-metal strike: a 1663 gold proof pattern crown of Charles II by John Roettiers (W&R-51, ESC-356). Wilson & Rasmussen indicate a known mintage of six pieces, but the Heritage cataloger notes that the number seen in recent years has been considerably less. Given the present example’s PR58 PCGS grade, it was not unexpected when it fetched $288,000 on its somewhat conservative $75,000 estimate.
Other top-selling British coins included:
• Victoria Una and the Lion proof 5 pounds, 1839 (KM-742, S-3851), PR62+ Deep Cameo PCGS: $264,000;
• George II gold 5 guineas, 1741/38 (KM-571.1, S-3663A), MS64+ NGC: $240,000;
• George III silver proof pattern “Three Graces” crown, 1817 (KM-PnA77, ESC-2020), PR64+ Cameo NGC: $204,000;
• Victoria 10-piece gold & silver proof set, 1893 (KM-PS13, S-PS7): $192,000;
• Victoria gold proof 5 pounds, 1887 (KM-769, S-3864), PR66 Ultra Cameo NGC: $156,000;
• George II gold 5 guineas, 1729 (KM-571.1, S-3663), MS64 PCGS: $156,000;
• Victoria gold proof pattern crown, 1887 (ESC-2678), PR65 Ultra Cameo NGC: $156,000;
• George IV 11-piece gold, silver & copper proof set, 1826 (S-PS1): $144,000.
The ancients on offer were dominated by the outstanding Morris collection of Imperial Rome. This segment of the catalog was led by a superlative 21 mm, 6.33 g aureus struck for Probus at Siscia 277 CE. The obverse shows the conjoined busts of Probus and Sol; the reverse Securitas seated (Calicó 4198; cf. RIC V.II 596). Just nine examples are known and with a NGC MS+ 5/5 - 4/5, Fine Style grade, that on offer had no problems racing away from a starting bid of $15,000 to achieve $156,000.
A second Probus aureus (5th emission, 278 CE) took $114,000 in NGC MS Star 5/5 - 4/5, Fine Style, while an aureus of similar grade struck for Victorinus (AD 269-271) and sporting a delightful Diana on the reverse made an easy $144,000. The latter’s provenance included the Nelson Bunker Hunt Collection.
In the circumstances, the rest of the world had slight difficulties making itself heard amongst the noise being generated by the high rollers. Two notable items included a Chinese Kuang-hsü gold specimen pattern Kuping tael of 1907 (KM-Pn302, Kann-1541) that realized $102,000 graded SP61 PCGS and a rare French Alexander I of Russia gold “Peacemaker” medallic essai 5 francs dated April 1814 that sold for $108,000 in MS63 NGC.
Full catalog details and prices realized are available at www.ha.com. They make compulsory reading for collectors of British coins.
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