View Full Version : Another Garage Sale

April 3rd, 2007, 12:46 PM
Three minutes passed and the auctioneer, the wry Hugh Edmeades, paused and said, “Waiting patiently at two point four million.” Then he said “fair warning” and reached for his gavel. Someone blurted, “Wait.” Scattered laughter.

Mr. Edmeades did not say “going once, going twice,” but simply repeated the last bid once again. No further bids.

The violin goes to someone, Mr. Edmeades declared, gaveling the sale to a close, “in the room.”

All eyes and cameras turned to a slightly startled man in gold-framed glasses and a gray suit, Ric Heinl, a violin dealer from Toronto.

Are you the buyer? a cameraman asked. No, Mr. Heinl said. Can you name the buyer? No, he said, his client wants to remain anonymous. The final price, with Christie’s commission, is $2.7 million.

I wouldn't pay a nickle over $2.2M for it, and this is why:

What Mr. Heinl’s client gets for 2,775,294 Canadian dollars is what is known as a “late period” Stradivarius, which is not from Stradivari’s “golden period” of 1700 to 1720.

Colorado Goat Herder: "Heh heh, ya kin sell them foreign tourists anything! $5000 for a fiddle! Dumb broad!"

The one up for auction yesterday is known as “The Solomon, Ex-Lambert.” It was acquired in 1922 for about $5,000 for Dorothy Mary Murray Lambert, one of the few female violinists in Britain at the time. It was later acquired for $49,000 by Seymour Solomon, a founder of Vanguard Records, the label of Paul Robeson and Joan Baez.