British Commonwealth notes soar in auction
- Published: Oct 9, 2017, 3 AM
Dix Noonan Webb’s 905-lot Sept. 25 paper money auction in London concluded with total sales, including commission, of £339,534 or $456,568. The action was dominated by the British Commonwealth material, where some lots far exceeded their estimates.
The most spectacular example was a perforated Malaya & British Borneo Board of Commissioners of Currency $100 specimen note of March 21, 1953. Estimated at £1,500 to £2,000 in Extremely Fine, it was sold at £13,200 ($17,730) with commission. Another Extremely Fine perforated specimen issue, a Mauritius 1,000-rupee note, 1954 to 1967, doubled its £4,000 to £5,000 estimate with a price of £10,200 ($13,705).
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Among the Bank of England offerings, standing out with a £7,800 ($10,480) bid was a presentation pair of 10-shilling and £1 notes signed by C.P. Mahon with identical serial numbers and still in their original parchment envelope. The catalog states that in November 1928, the Bank of England issued its first 10-shilling notes and its first £1 notes in over 100 years. The first 125 examples of each denomination were presented to dignitaries. These two are traced to the first Lord Kindersley, who was a director of the Bank of England from 1914 to 1946.
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A collection of 78 Irish 10-shilling notes saw lively bidding across platforms. It had a 100 percent sell-through rate and a total realized price of £30,816. The two most successful bidders were a collector and a dealer, both based in Dublin.
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