EXPLORE RARE BOOK AUCTIONS
Manage collectible and Rare Book Auctions. Quickly find your favorite Rare Book Lots in your Personal Notebook.
Forum auctions rapidly became one of the largest specialist auction houses for Antiquarian Books and Manuscripts, Photographs and other Works on Paper. It has performed 38 antiquarian books and manuscript auctions in 2020. In their first sale in 2016 they sold one of only four known copies of ‘Epistolae familiares’ by Cicero printed on vellum in 1502, for £160,000.
PBA Galleries was originally founded as California Book Auction Galleries in San Francisco in 1955, by Maurice Powers. It performs a large number of auctions every year (35 in 2020), dedicated to rare books, cartography, ephemera, autographs, manuscripts and comic books. In 2008 the first edition (1814) of the Lewis and Clark famous expedition (with map), sold for $216,000.
Sotheby’s auctions is one of the oldest auction houses in the world. It was founded in 1744 by bookseller Samuel Baker, though it was later renamed after John Sotheby. A big success was the auction of ‘Scarce and Valuable Books’ from the library of Sir John Stanley, 1st Baronet of Grangegorman (Dublin) in 1767. Sotheby’s performed 41 collectible book auctions in 2020.
Catawiki auctions performed in 2020 the highest number of book auctions for any auction house in a single year (1713 auctions). Catawiki’s book auctions contain rare books, vintage comics, first editions, manuscripts, maps etc. Catawiki was founded in 2008 as a collector community. The picture above depicts a very rare miniature bible printed in 1727, sold for €2400 in 2017.
Heritage auctions has performed 90 comics and collectible books auctions in 2020. It was established in 1976 by a partnership between two rival collectors and is now the largest comic books and comic art auctioneer in the world. In 2019 it set new records with sales of $79 million. Among other exceptional lots, Marvel Comics number 1, sold for $1,260,000.
Christies auctions is the largest auction house by revenue today. It is also one of the oldest, founded in 1766 by James Christie. In a Christies auction in 1994 Bill Gates made the highest bid for any book ever, to acquire Leonardo da Vinci’s manuscript codex Leicester for $31 million ($54 million adjusted in 2021). Christies has performed 38 pure collectible book auctions in 2020.
Reiss & Sohn is a top rare book auction house in Germany, established 1971. In 2017 it achieved the highest record price ever for a printed book sold at a German auction: €1.28 million for the first edition of Martin Luther’s “95 Theses”, which marked the beginning of the protestant reform. Their 50 year anniversary auction performed on 21 April 2021, contained exceptional items.
Stockholms Auktionsverk is the worlds oldest Auction house still in operation today. It was founded by Baron Claes Rålamb Governor of Stockholm in 1674. Today it is represented in London, Paris, Nice, New York, Brussels, Geneva, Helsinki and Oslo and performs pure book auctions about twice a year. Famous customers include Sweden’s King Karl XI and King Gustav III.
Vergos auctions is the largest auction house in Greece. It was founded in 1989 by collector Petros Vergos and offers outstanding collections of Greek rare books, maps, autographs and manuscripts. Documents of great historic significance have been auctioned, like the oath of Kolokotronis (1822), a cornerstone of the Greek revolution against the Ottoman empire.
Compare the catalogs of rare book auctions before you bid.
Keep favorite lots in your Personal Auction Notebook.
Don’t buy in the blind!
If you are interested in rare and collectible books, you must have this program
There is hardly a more exciting feeling than the moment you achieved the highest bid and the coveted item become yours!
To achieve more of these moments you must do the best possible preparation and collect background information about the lots offered.
AuctionsCodex is the tool to prepare for these gracious moments and will multiply your great feeling for collecting books.
Once you have entered your precious lot information in your Personal Notebook, you will be alerted before the auction happens.
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