More than a dozen aggressive bids drove a Victoria gold Proof “Una and the Lion” 5 Pounds 1839 PR64 Deep Cameo PCGS to $528,000 and numerous records fell to lead Heritage Auctions New York International Numismatic Convention (NYINC) World Coins auctions to $17,312,686 in total sales.
The event was split into two sections a week apart. The NYINC World Coins Platinum Night Auction reached $12,219,587 on January 10; the NYINC World Coins Signature Auction added $5,102,099 on January 18-19.
The event drew 5,348 bidders from around the globe – 1,852 for the Platinum Night session and 3,496 for the Signature event. By the end of the auction, 23 lots brought results of more than $100,000.
“In every respect, this event went above and beyond, surpassing expectations,” Heritage Auctions Executive Vice President of Numismatics Cris Bierrenbach said. “We are continuing to see strong and often record-breaking prices across the board, bringing extraordinary value for our consignors.”
The Una and the Lion, by William Wyon, is a British series rarity first issued as part of Queen Victoria’s delayed coronation Proof set that has transcended the confines of British numismatics and has become a coin type that is collected by trophy hunters worldwide.
From the Madrid mint, an Amadeo I gold Specimen 100 Pesetas 1871(71) SD-M SP63 PCGS surpassed pre-auction estimates when it climbed to $240,000. The first example ever offered through Heritage Auctions also is the finest certified example. It has been suggested that as few as six to eight of the 1871 100 Pasetas remain, making this example an unlikely survivor in its choice-certified state and the finest recognized by the grading services, which have recognized just three other examples.
More than a dozen bids boosted an Octavian, as Consul (43 BCE), with Julius Caesar, as Dictator Perpetuo and Pontifex Maximus. AV aureus (19mm, 7.69 gm, 9h). NGC VF 5/5 – 4/5 to $204,000 – 1.7 times its high pre-auction estimate. This exceptional rarity includes two portraits, one of Octavian, the other one of exceedingly few near-contemporary portraits of Julius Caesar, in gold.
Also soaring past expectations was a Philip Syng, Jr. & Lewis Fueter and G-Counterstamped/Regulated 8 Dollars ND (pre-1783) VF Details (Clipped, Graffiti) PCGS that closed at $192,000 – nearly 2.5 times its high pre-auction estimate. Fueter was one of the leading producers of Indian Trade silver for the British military apparatus in North America before 1770, and Syng was a renowned silversmith. This magnificent specimen is believed to be only the second Syng-regulated gold piece brought to auction, and one of precious few to bear his mark, making it a coin of immense historical interest and significance.
Three dozen bids poured in for a Republic 8-Piece Uncertified gold & silver Medallic Proof Set 1968 until it rose all the way to $162,000 – more than 10 times its high pre-auction estimate. From a mintage of just 25, this is an extraordinary full set of gold and silver issues that are almost never offered together at auction. It was struck in commemoration of the election of Alexander Dubcek, an event that kicked off the Prague Spring, an attempt to reform the Communist Party in Czechoslovakia, which would eventually be quelled by the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops and the Czechoslovak Hockey Riots the following year.
Several records were set in the auction, including:
- A Philip III Posthumous gold Cob 2 Escudos 1622 S-F MS64 NGC – $156,000
- A Philip III “Royal” 8 Reales 1609 Mo-A AU55 NGC – $156,000
- A Victoria Proof “Gothic” Crown 1847 PR63 Cameo NGC – $132,000
- A Ferdinand & Isabella (1474-1504) gold 4 Excelentes ND (from 1497) (Aqueduct)-A MS62 PCGS – $120,000
- A Licinius II, as Caesar (AD 317-324). AV aureus (21mm, 5.32 gm, 11h). NGC Choice MS 5/5 – 4/5 – $117,000
- An Anne gold 2 Guineas 1711 MS63 PCGS – $78,000
Other highlights included, but were not limited to:
- A George II gold 5 Guineas 1741/38 MS63 NGC – $156,000
- A George IV gold Proof 5 Pounds 1826 PR63 Ultra Cameo NGC – $156,000
- A Cleopatra VII and Marc Antony, rulers of the East (37-30 BCE). AR tetradrachm (26mm, 15.06 gm, 1h). NGC XF 4/5 – 3/5 – $156,000 – a world record for an NGC-graded example of the coin
- A MACEDONIAN KINGDOM. Alexander III the Great (336-323 BCE). AV distater (22mm, 17.16 gm, 10h). NGC Choice AU 4/5 – 5/5, Fine Style – $156,000
Highlights from the Signature event included, but were not limited to:
- A Republic 8 Reales 1860 Pi-FE VF Details (Reverse Scratched) NGC – $36,000
- A Confederation 2 Francs 1901-B MS66 PCGS – $26,400
- A CARIAN ISLANDS. Cos. Ca. 300-250 BCE – $26,400
- A British India. Victoria gold Mohur 1841-(c) MS62 NGC – $22,800
- A Republic 12-Piece Uncertified gold Proof “Salvador Dali – The 12 Tribes of Israel” Medal Set ND – $22,200
- A Nicholas II Rouble 1899-?? MS64 PCGS – $21,600
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