Auction 432

November, 2-4, 2022

Ancient - medieval - modern coins 

Greek and Roman Coins in finest condition and with exquisite provenances

Graichen collection, part II: specimens, proofs, miss-strikes

Auctions 430/431

April, 27-29, 2022

Ancient - medieval - modern coins 

Dr. Eckhard Plümacher Collection - Burkhard Graichen Collection, part I

As in last year's spring auction, the expectations of all participants were once again exceeded. This was particularly evident in the case of high-quality ancient coins, but also in the case of modern coinage, especially the Graichen collection.
In the first part of auction 430, € 28,000 for an Attic didrachm (lot no. 46, SP € 7,500) was the first sign of how robust the prices for Greek rarities are. The € 8,000 for the handsome 60-aces piece of the Roman Republic (no. 101, SP € 6,000) then set a marker for the following stretch of well-preserved denarii, which enjoyed strong demand (e.g. no. 131 for € 800 at a € 150 estimate), as did the Byzantine coins (hyperpyron of Alexios I. no. 334, at € 1500 at a € 350 estimate).
In the afternoon, the auction action really took off with the sale of the Dr. Plümacher collection. All in all, the estimate was almost tripled. This shows that ambitious collecting in combination with the high-quality presentation of a closed collection causes a worldwide sensation. In view of the numerous record hammer prices, some of which represent best marks of the respective coin types, only a few highlights are mentioned here:
The rare tetradrachm of Mithradates IV. (no. 3177) achieved a hammer price of € 135,000 with an estimate of € 25,000 - certainly also thanks to its outstanding provenance. A lion-headed tetradrachm from Rhegion (no. 3026) only found its buyer with a bid of € 38,000 (estimate € 7,500). An exceptionally finely cut Siculopunian tetradrachm (no. 3072) was driven up from an estimate of € 5,000 to € 32,000. The price of another Sicilian tetradrachm (no. 3059) rose from € 3,000 to € 26,000, more than eightfold. The title piece (no. 3168), moderately valued at € 5,000 and acquired by the consignor in our auction 421 (2019) for a then considerable € 9,000, now fetched € 22,000 and may be considered representative of the price development of high-quality ancient coins in the past few years.
Roman coins were also fiercely contested. The record holder in terms of the rate of increase was a Roman Semuncia of captivatingly good quality (no. 3349, from € 200 to € 2,200), followed by a denarius with a particularly vivid portrait of Pompey (no. 3402), whose price was driven up to € 20,000 (estimate € 1,000). A particularly rare sestertius of Balbinus (no. 3529) rose from € 2,500 to € 15,000.
And finally, the rarities among the provincial coinages were also recognised by the respective connoisseurs, so that a Cyzician large bronze for Caracalla (no. 3651) increased from € 500 to € 4,800.
If, despite the generally high rate of increase, numerous coins could be knocked down in the range of the estimate or even below it (for example, a drachm of Eucratides, no. 3334, with a provenance of 1973 at € 160), this shows that it is always worthwhile to follow our auctions closely and to "strike" at the right moment.


After the extremely successful auction of antique coins, the auction of modern coins of the country and abroad followed on Thursday in front of a clearly different audience. Although the five-digit tops were missing in the offer of foreign coins, good results were achieved throughout in the medium-priced segment. The estimate was exceeded almost everywhere, on the whole by 60%. Particularly good preservations were again appreciated, for example the beautiful series of English coins from AD 1704-1901 (Nos. 546-568). Gold also continued to fascinate and achieved high prices. This was followed by a solidly bid series of thalers of the Habsburg hereditary lands. Here the East Central European market was heavily involved through the internet, and the coins sold 40% above the estimate. This was followed by the usual wide range of old German coins and medals in all metals from the Middle Ages to modern times. A Brandenburg-Prussian "Guineadukat" 1683 achieved the proud hammer price of 23,000 euros. The well-kept collection of 19th century double thalers was also consistently appreciated, with individual pieces frequently achieving four-figure hammer prices. In this area, too, the estimate was exceeded by over 40%. As in the past, the collection of coins of the German Empire remained stable at a high level.
On Friday, the eagerly awaited highlight of the 430th auction followed with the 569 lots of the Burkhard Graichen collection. The uniqueness of the collection had spread far enough in advance, and the possibility of adding the greatest rarities or unique pieces to one’s collection had reached collectors and dealers alike in a big way. These numerous rarities were fought over in the hall as well as on the Internet usually long until prices were found that gave the life's work of the late collector the deserved appreciation. Although the collection consisted mainly of the often neglected small coins, there was great interest in all areas. An enumeration of the top results is impossible in the shortness of this text. Therefore, we would like to refer to the list of results which will be published soon. It should be significant enough that the surcharges of the complete collection were 80% above the estimate. The few remaining lots can be purchased in the post auction sale or at significantly reduced prices in the fall auction of Dr. Peus Nachf.
As always, the auction was rounded off by lots with favorable prices, which closed an extremely successful auction with the usual good results.

We would like to thank the numerous colleagues and the many collectors from all over the world, who have helped with their participation to make this sale such a remarkable success. Our thanks include all those bidders, who have not been successful this time.
The unsold pieces may be purchased within a period of 5 weeks from date of the auction at 80 % of the estimated value at our normal conditions of sale.