8 objects from the Cabinet of Curiosities

I always appreciate the opportunity to examine and enjoy a view of eclectic objects. That makes it a real treat when presented with an auction filled with the unique and the uncommon. Come Dec. 10, Turner Auctions + Appraisals will bring more than 200 lots of this type of item, from various private collections, in its Cabinet of Curiosities online auction.

When presented with such a wide variety of unusual objects it’s hard to narrow a preview to a certain number, but I thought I’d share eight fascinating lots from this auction.

Ships Ahoy

Curiosities abound on board

A detailed model of the historic HMS Bounty ship, complete with masts, yards, and rigging, and a carved figurehead, measuring 35 x 15 ½ x 30, comes before bidders as Lot 3. The estimate is $2,000 to $3,000.

Lot 35 represents an example of nature in a turquoise nugget, richly colored, weighing 3 lbs. 15 ounces and measuring 8 ½ x 8 inches, with an estimate of $400 to $600.

One fossil is an exciting find, but a cluster of fossils available in a single object is something altogether different. Lot 75 of this auction offers exactly this type of different and dynamic in a fossil cluster measuring 5 ¾ x 8 inches. It carries an estimate of $90 to $120.

Exquisite Extinctions

A unique curiosity is coming before bidders in Lot 115 in a trilobite fossil, representing an extinct type of arthropod. It measures 16 by 17 inches and has an estimate of $300 to $500.

For centuries, Chinese writers, artisans, and academics have incorporated the presence of scholars’ stones or rocks in their work space, as a source of inspiration and influence of balance. In the Dec. 10 auction, a Chinese scholar’s stone bearing the painted image of a chrysanthemum will come up for bid.

A classic marble statue, robed and bearing items of pottery, is slated to come to auction Dec. 10 through Tuner Auctions & Appraisals. It measures 32 ½ by 9 ½ inches, with an estimate of $1,000 to $1,500.

Ceramic Showcase


Designer Elsa Peretti, designing for Tiffany, created two candlesticks up for bid Dec. 10. The glass candlesticks measure 14 inches in height and together as a lot, the pair, has a presale estimate of $200-$300.

Lot 194 features a mid 19th-century stoneware jug, with a height of 18 ½ inches and an estimate of $150-$200.

Whether curiosities are your thing, the lots in Turner Auctions + Appraisals Dec. 10 sale are a captivating lot, and worthy of exploration and appreciation.

For more information, visit www.turnerauctionsonline.com.

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