10 MAY 1930, Page 29

Notes for Collectors THE coming of the motor car has

in no way weakened the Englishman's love of the horse, whether on the race- course or in the hunting-field. Thus, it is easy to under- stand the ever-growing popularity of the English sporting pictures of a century ago, which is a feature of many a sale nowadays. At Christie's last Friday, for example, a set of four little panels of Fox-hunting, by J. F. Herring, dated 1821, fetched 490 guineas ; a picture by the same hand of a racehorse with his owner, trainer and groom fetched 290 guineas, and another of Grey Morning, which won for Lord George Bentinck the Two Thousand Guineas in 1838, brought 190 guineas. These items occurred in a very miscellaneous collection, the lots in which averaged no more than £30 apiece, so that the special interest aroused by these homely representa- tions of old English sport was very obvious. Chippendale has been the hero of the early days of the summer season. One is accustomed to see eager bidding for any good and authentic examples of eighteenth. century English furniture in the Chippendale manner, But when, on May 1 at Christie's, Colonel Liddell's two mahogany chairs fetched 1,900 guineas, it was permissible to express surprise. The chairs had, it is true, an unimpeachable pedigree, and they were unusually ornate, with much carving on the back and on the cabriole legs. Still, a thousand pounds for a chair must be Chippendale's auction record. By comparison the winning bid of 1,800 guineas for a set of ten mahogany chairs and two armchairs by or after Chippendale seems very moderate ; but in this case the backs were less elaborately carved and the legs were plain. At the same sale of furniture from well-known mansions six very handsome Louis XV gilt armchairs, covered with needle- work, brought 1,160 guineas, and an exceptionally charm- ing Boulle commode, inlaid with tortoiseshell, mother- of-pearl and ivory, 550 guineas. The contrast in prices shows the tendency to prefer the robust English pieces, which will look well in any modern house, to the exquisite French work that demands a setting of its own period. For old tapestry the collector's demand is insatiable. He will pay anything for what is rare and antique. Christie's on May 1 two delightful panels of Aubusson tapestry, measuring six feet by nine, fetched no less than 1,860 guineas. The following day at Sotheby's an English tapestry panel with a hunting scene by the Fulham designer, Bradshaw, brought 560 guineas.. It has for some time been evident that English tapestry of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, whether in panels or as furniture coverings, is in high favour with the discerning amateur, and Bradshaw's early Georgian work is unquestionably good. In Hurcomb's sale this week-end is a screen made up of six Biblical scenes in English needlework of the seventeenth century—a very unusual and elaborate example of the art that beguiled the time of country dames in good King Charles's golden days. At the same sale at Hurcomb's is a remarkable silver rosewater dish, dated 1618 and weighing ninety- eight ounces. Its a.ge and its ornamentation with half- • a-dozen Biblical scenes make it very desirable. Recent auctions show that the high prices paid for silver in the winter are being well maintained. At Christie's on April 30th, there appeared a bell-shaped Elizabethan salt-cellar and cover with the London hall-mark of 1586 and the arms of Chorley of Chorley. It was a. plain and homely, piece, that would probably not have won a second glance from the ordinary spectator. Yet for this little vessel, weighing 111 ounces, a bidder paid no less than £1,600. On the other hand, a marvellous piece of English or German-English crafts- manship of the same period in the shape of a candelabrum in rock-crystal and silver with figures of sphinxes and satyrs brought a final bid of only £810 in the same sale. Nearly as much—or 2302, to be exact—was paid for a plain tankard, with the mark of 1684, which had been • given by the owners Of a ship, the St. Peter,' to a_ certain "T. P." It would seem that the average modern collector prefers the plain work of the silversmith, without the rococo adortunents that once were in vogue. For the serious collector of postage-stamps Mr. H. R. Harmer's catalogue of his sale of Monday and Tuesday next is, as usual, valuable and enticing. - it deseribes a_ Parisian collection of• French and French-Colonial stamps. The Colonial section is said to be—and one may well believe it—the most complete ever offered at ' auction except that of the Ferrari collection which the French Government confiscated as enemy property. The Guadeloupe series is especially rich in 1903 and 1904 surcharges, the list of ,which, it_ is said, took forty years to complete. A 40 centime stamp of 1876, black on blue, is valued at 45,000 francs, as only six copies are known ,.. and this is probably the best. Nossi-Be, Oboek, Grand Comoro, Oubangi-Chari, Mauritania, and so on, are names that represent the great deeds of French soldiers and explorers ; the stamps are their silent memorials. The first important picture-sate of the season, that of the Carrington heirlooms at Christie's, occurs simul- taneously with- the publication of this issue. Among the more notable lots are a fine Claude, Jupiter and Europa, from Sir Joshua Reynolds's collection ; a good Van Goyen landscape with cattle, 1642; a well-known Winter scene by Isack van Ostade ; and a Ruysdael with cattle and figures by Adriaen van de Velde. In the same sale are several English sporting pictures belonging to Earl Winterton, such as Femeley's view of the St. Leger of 1836, a portrait of a sportsman by Stubbs, anted 1776, a picture of Shorthorn Cattle by Ben Marshall, and a portrait byFemeley of the celebrated cross-country 7 eider, Captain Horatio Ross, - on his horse " Clinker. _ .