Put together by expert Dr Peter Rixon this section drew international, national and local interest to The Octagon Salerooms in East Reach, Taunton.
Three phone bidders plus would-be internet buyers propelled the price of a folding map of the China coast and a rough sketch of the provinces lying between Canton and Peking, 1860.
Hand-coloured in outline and linen-backed it had been published by the Surveyor General’s Office, Calcutta.
It had belonged to Major General Sir Peter Scratchley, KCMG, Royal Engineers (1835-1885) and had been passed down through the generations.
Stiff competition from two of the eager phone lines saw the price soar, but eventually a tenacious online bidder won out and the map was purchased for £6,500 – the top price of the day.
More than 100 books and maps featured in the comprehensive day-long sale. Other prices of note included a copy of Britannia by Richard Blome, which was bought by a phone bidder for almost £2,000.
A collection of The Adventures of Tintin was another smash hit in the saleroom. This included a number of first British editions including The Secret of the Unicorn. It was bought for £1,370.
A room bidder emerged successful for an engraved map of Wales. It was bought for £560. Not far behind was a signed limited edition of Edmund Dulac’s Fairy Book. This copy was numbered 47/350 and bought for almost £500 by a phone line bidder.
A large book and map section will be included in the sale of November 7. Meanwhile the auctioneers are preparing for two sales next month – the regular antiques sale on June 6 and the second quarterly collectors’ sale on June 7. For more information and to consign items please contact the saleroom on 01823 332525.