On the eve of Coinex, the UK’s premier international numismatic show, A. H. Baldwin & Sons Ltd sold the final part of the record breaking Åke Lindén Collection. Quality and rarity ruled the auction on the day as an 1874 Gold Burgers Pond from the Republic of South Africa sold for £78,000 and a Japanese Mutsuhito Gold 2-Yen, Meii 10 (1877) achieved £74,400. With exquisite coins like these continuing to soar to exceptional prices, the total for the full collection exceeded US$10 million.
Dimitri Loulakakis, World Coin Specialist at A. H. Baldwin & Sons Ltd commented after the auction: “The numismatic world has indulged in the Lindén collection over the past year. The collection has offered exceptional rarities and sublime coins, whilst at the same time sparking the interest of new budding numismatists. The depth and breadth of his collection has come to monumental and worthy climax. It has been a pleasure to handle and disperse Lindén’s collection and we are delighted with the reception it has received from numismatists, collectors and investors worldwide. ”
Coins from Africa achieved some of the day’s best prices. The first gold coin from the Republic of South Africa, the 1874 Gold Burgers Pond, stole the show selling for £78,000 (US$127,000). The example was of the rarer ‘coarse beard’ variety and is one of the finest known examples of this very rare type.
When President Thomas François Burgers (1872-1877) first approached the Heaton Mint, Birmingham, in 1874 to begin production of the first indigenous coinage, they proposed two designs, 695 were issued with a ‘fine beard’ and 142 were issued with a ‘coarse beard’. The legislators objected to Burgers use of his own profile on the coin and so rejected both designs. As a result the proposed coinage became obsolete and were sold on as mementoes. It was not until the revival of the Pond in 1892 that interest in the Burgers Pond was reignited, by which point many had been lost, altered or mounted into jewellery. [Lot 3395]
Other top lots in the Africa section included two Zanzibar coins, a Sultan Barghash ibn Sa’id, Gold 2½-Riyals, 1299AH (1881-188) which sold for £42,000 [Lot 3444] and a Gold 5-Riyals, from the same year, which achieved £36,000 [Lot 3443].
The opening section of Central & South American coins proved extremely popular with bidders in the room who had travelled from overseas specifically for the auction. Most examples in the section soared past their pre-sale estimates, with a number doubling the start price. A Mexican Revolutionary coinage of Oaxaca State, Gold 60-Pesos, 1916, estimated at £12,000-15,000, achieved £55,200(US$90,000), proving an exceptional upward trend in the current market from coins of this type. It is very rare to find pieces of this high grade from the Mexican Revolution (1913-1916), as although a huge variety of coins were struck, production was generally of low quality due to the stressful and chaotic conditions. [Lot 3209]
Further evidence of this market frenzy was a United States of Colombia, Gold 10-Pesos, 1886/74, that achieved £15,600 (US$25,500) against an estimate of £5,000-8,000 [Lot 3060], and a Republic of Costa Rica, Gold 20-Pesos, 1873 GW, that sold for £28,800 (US$47,000) against an estimate of £8,000-12,000. [Lot 3080]
Other stand-out lots in the Central & South American section included a Republic of Peru, Transitional Coinage, Gold 4-Escudos that achieved £14,400 (US$23,500). [Lot 3231]
Following the success of Linden’s Chinese coins in Hong Kong earlier this year, many of his rarities from South East Asia achieved top prices. A Japan Mutsuhito, Gold 2-Yen, Meji 10, sold for £74,400 (US$121,000). Only 39 of these pieces were struck and this example was in mint state with brilliant mirror fields. [Lot 3493]
Mutsuhito transformed Japan into an industrial world power with his monetary reforms and revolutionary government. Other coins minted under him that achieved top prices included a Gold 10-Yen, Meiji 9 (1876), which sold for £67,200 (US$109,500) [Lot 3499] and a Gold 20-Yen, Meiji 9 (1876), which reached £57,600 (US$94,000) [Lot 3502].
The sale also included a collection of Crusader coins that sold for a total of £52,302 (US$85,000) and a collection of Indian coins that totalled £218,088 (US$355,000).
This auction was part of a two day calendar taking place during Coinex 2014 on the 24-25 September. Baldwin’s also offered Auction 90, on Thursday 23 September 2014, featuring the David Sellwood Collection of Parthian Coins. Catalogues are available online at www.baldwin.co.uk.