London’s Apollo Galleries welcome New Years with January 16 auction of ancient art and antiques


Rare and important Neo-Assyrian vase, circa 800-600 BC. weight 815g. Provenance: several British private collections. Accompanied by the CIRAM laboratory authentication test and its original scientific report from the 1990s by Professor WG Lambert. Estimate of £ 40,000 to £ 80,000
Apollo Galleries

LONDON – Apollo Galleries, London’s leading source for authentic and fully vetted ancient art and antiques, will hold its first New Years auction on Sunday, January 16, with live auctions on the internet and through LiveAuctioneers. The mind-boggling assemblage of rarities from legendary civilizations comes with authoritative descriptions and reviews from a team of newly recruited specialists whose experience at the highest echelons of the art trade is amply documented.

Each of the new consultants has a training perfectly suited to an Apollo Galleries division. Emma Saber, a recognized authority on Greek, Roman, Egyptian and Near Eastern antiquities for over 20 years and a specialist for Christie’s, is also a speaker with Christie’s Education on the antiques market and how to collect and catalog antiques. Richard Falkiner, a respected professional who brought his expertise to The Masterpiece, BRAFA Art, Frieze Fairs and Bonhams, covered ancient, medieval and Islamic objects, as well as coins and medals, for Christie’s over a period of 14 year. He was elected a fellow of the Venerable Society of Antiquaries of London, founded in 1707. Apollo Galleries also welcomes expert contributions from Russel Scott, who served as the Authenticity Agent for the Viking Society for over 26 years. He has worked in the antiques trade for over 43 years and has been a consultant for the British Museum as well as for BBC documentaries on medieval and Viking weapons. Its vast body of knowledge includes manufacturing techniques from ancient times.

The auction opens with a superb selection of ancient ceramics, glass and metal items which includes many unusual items, such as a shroud and colorful Egyptian earthenware mummy mask, and silver letters used to spell a good luck message on the belts of Roman soldiers. At the head of the group is a rare and important Neo-Assyrian vessel, circa 800-600 BC. Few examples of this type are known. Its lineage dates back to the 1960s and resembles a work sold in 2012 at Christie’s in London. Accompanied by an authentication test from the CIRAM laboratory and its original scientific report from the 1990s by Professor WG Lambert, it is estimated between £ 40,000 and £ 80,000.

Another stellar piece is a black ceramic bucchero kantharos from Etruria dating from around 550-500 BC. Distinctly burnished, the bucchero is considered the emblematic ceramic of the Etruscans and was mainly used by the elite. The bucchero offered by Apollo Galleries has been part of several prestigious European collections and was also sold by Christie’s London in 1998. It is auctioned with an estimate of £ 10,000 to £ 20,000.

Roman gold D-shaped ring with sardonyx cameo from Mars, Julio-Claudian period, circa 100 AD. Carved in four layers with articulated eye, embossed ornate crested helmet. Provenance: Private London Collection, acquired from the US East Coast Real Estate Collection formed before 1979. Estimate £ 6,000 to £ 9,000
Apollo Galleries

Designed to hold wine, a beautiful Etruscan-Corinthian pottery olpe vase with incised decoration on its ovoid body is from a private collector who acquired it directly from the University of Pennsylvania Archaeological Museum in 1965. It is similar to an example of a book credited to the collection of Hungary’s largest and finest art museum, the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts. Estimate: £ 6,000-9,000

Wearable antique jewelry of extraordinary beauty includes rings, pendants, amulets, earrings, necklaces and bracelets, many of which are made of gold and adorned with precious or semi-precious stones. A Roman sardonyx cameo pendant from around AD 300-400 features the sculpted head of Medusa (or gorgonion), with snakes around the face and wings intertwined in her wild hair. When used in jewelry, Medusa was believed to confer protection on the wearer, including against the “evil eye”. The cameo was mounted in gold at one point, probably in the 18th century. His auction estimate is £ 6,000-9,000.

Ancient Greek Chalcidian hoplite bronze helmet, circa 550-450 BC. Expressive shape with deep crescent cheek guards, small teardrop shaped nose guard, carefully cut eyes with ridged embossed eyebrows, flared neck guard. Of a type still used by soldiers in the time of Alexander the Great. Museum quality. Provenance: a collection of Roman and Greek weapons and armor formed in the late 1970s / early 1980s; property of a London gentleman. Estimate of £ 45,000 to £ 85,000
Apollo Galleries

Collectors will be delighted with the array of antique gold rings chosen for this sale. Among them is a magnificent D-shaped Roman gold ring with a sardonyx cameo from Mars. It dates from the Julio-Claudian period, around 100 AD. The artist sculpted it in four layers, with a hinged eye and an ornate crested helmet in relief. From a private collection in London and previously acquired from a real estate collection on the east coast of the United States formed before 1979, it is presented with an estimate of £ 6,000-9,000.

Weapons and armor still play a big role in Apollo Galleries auctions, with helmets consistently ranking among the most sought after items. The January 16 sale includes several exceptional examples: a Greek Chalcidian bronze helmet from around 550-450 BC. and an impressive and well-preserved medieval iron helmet consisting of five rivet-linked plates, with ventilation holes and a shaped nose guard, £ 15,000-30,000.

Premium Asian antiques include a gray shale Gandharan torso from around AD 200-300 as a collector. Estimate between £ 40,000 and £ 80,000. Another notable item, a late Shang dynasty, circa 1300-1200BC jia, or ritual wine vase, underwent X-ray fluorescence analysis in an independent Belgian laboratory and was found to be from the period described, without any evidence. modern trace in the patina. Acquired in the early 1990s in Hong Kong, it will be offered with an estimate of £ 20,000 to 40,000.

The Apollo Galleries auction on January 16, 2022 will begin at 8 a.m. EST / 1 p.m. UK time. View the fully illustrated auction catalog and register to bid by mail or live online through LiveAuctioneers. The company ships worldwide and all packaging is handled in-house by white-gloved specialists. Questions: call Apollo Galleries, London, on +44 7424 994167 or email [email protected] Online:

Apollo Galleries is a member of the British Numismatic Trading Association (BNTA) and the Art Loss Register (AR). Their newly expanded site, with a new state-of-the-art on-site testing laboratory, is located at 26 Bury Place in the heart of London’s Bloomsbury district, opposite the British Museum.


Dr Ivan Bonchev, director

Apollo Galleries

+44 7424 994167

[email protected]

Apollo Galleries

25 Burial place

London, United Kingdom

[email protected]

+44 7424 994167

About the Apollo Galleries

Appropriately named after the god of light, art and knowledge, Apollo takes you through the ancient past through antiques and numismatics. Founded by Dr Ivan Bonchev in 2010, Apollo encompasses all aspects of collecting and appreciating ancient art, antiques and coins. Our specialties include: Roman, Greek, Asian, Egyptian, Medieval, Viking and Neolithic Antiquity. Our main gallery, based in Bloomsbury, central London, features an expertly curated selection of pieces from all over history. Here we welcome visitors from all over the world to see and learn about our work in person and through special events and upcoming conferences. Our full gallery collection is also available. In a similar vein, our auction house regularly offers new catalogs to a large international audience of collectors. Every part we deal with is verified by a panel of expert consultants, and many of them are scientifically tested as well. You can check out our upcoming auctions and learn how to bid here. Formerly known as Pax Romana, in just 10 years we have grown considerably. With a database of 20,000 clients, we are internationally recognized, with clients from over 70 countries. We also help with the maintenance of collections for old and new customers, and we welcome sending antiques to both our gallery and auctions.


About Author

Comments are closed.