Anglo-Saxon coin collector’s unparalleled treasure trove of 576 objects sells for £856,000, including a world-record £40,800 for a gold shilling from the 7th century by King Eadbald.
The amazing collection of historical Anglo-Saxon coins owned by a financial director has sold at auction for a stunning £856,000. In the 1950s, Tony Abramson, a past president of the Yorkshire Numismatic Society, began collecting coins at the age of four.
His interest grew through his childhood, and he went to considerable efforts to expand his collection throughout the decades that followed, eventually reaching 1,200 coins. The first half of his collection, consisting of 576 coins, was auctioned off by Spink & Son in London earlier this year, prompting a bidding war.
The online auction, which drew over 400 buyers, lasted a remarkable 12 hours due to the tremendous level of demand. A 7th century gold shilling showing Eadbald, King of Kent, set a world record when it sold for £40,800.Another record price was £30,000 for a coin featuring Bishop Paulinus, the missionary who converted pagan kings to Christianity and ultimately served as the first Bishop of York.
Mellitus, the first Bishop of London, had a gold coin sold for £34,800. The overall hammer price for the collection was £714,000, more than double the pre-sale estimate of £330,000. The total cost was £856,000, including additional costs.
The majority of the coins, which were formerly stored at Fitzwilliam College in Cambridge, were discovered in the last 30-40 years using a metal detector. ‘A modest pre-sale estimate was swiftly smashed with an exciting final hammer price reaching more than twice of the initial estimate and establishing dozens of world records,’ said Gregory Edmund, specialist at Spink & Son.
Over the 12 hour period, Edmund wrote, the auction room was flooded with ‘frenzied online and telephone bidding’ as ‘investors and the trade fought with all their might to share in the riches of Tony’s huge cabinet. ‘He went on to say that Abramson’s collection is unlike any other private or museum collection in the world.’
Spink & Son address: 67-69 Southampton Row, Bloomsbury, WC1B 4ET London, United Kingdom
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