08 December 2016 | 10 °C

Is This London's Oddest Auction?

James Drury
By James Drury Last edited 28 months ago
Is This London's Oddest Auction?
A Swarovski crystal-encrusted skeleton of a dog (canis lupus familiaris). 
The teeth and claws have been applied with platinum, and the skeleton is held in place with magnets, set on a stone plinth with carved inscription 'Moogstones' , with a fitted box.
(Estimate £20,000-£30,000)
A Swarovski crystal-encrusted skeleton of a dog (canis lupus familiaris). The teeth and claws have been applied with platinum, and the skeleton is held in place with magnets, set on a stone plinth with carved inscription 'Moogstones' , with a fitted box. (Estimate £20,000-£30,000)
An  imposing decorative full armour with grotesque visor, in German early 16th century Maximilian style. Made during the second half of the 19th century out of bright steel with characteristic fluted decoration throughout. It includes a close-helmet with twin roped combs and pivoting visor with fierce countenance of barred teeth, hooked nose and bulging eyes.
(Estimate £25,000-£30,000)
An imposing decorative full armour with grotesque visor, in German early 16th century Maximilian style. Made during the second half of the 19th century out of bright steel with characteristic fluted decoration throughout. It includes a close-helmet with twin roped combs and pivoting visor with fierce countenance of barred teeth, hooked nose and bulging eyes. (Estimate £25,000-£30,000)
A highly unusual oak 'capture' chair of Elizabethan style, circa 1900.
Its carvings include green man masks, portrait medallions and foliage. The arched canopy has a central boss carved with a Tudor Rose beneath a crown, dated 1603. It is engraved with ‘Welcome to my friends’ carved beneath. When the seat is sat on the 'capture' mechanism is released and a pair of iron bars trap the 'victim' in the chair. There is a concealed release mechanism to rear at base. (Estimate £25,000-£35,000)
A highly unusual oak 'capture' chair of Elizabethan style, circa 1900. Its carvings include green man masks, portrait medallions and foliage. The arched canopy has a central boss carved with a Tudor Rose beneath a crown, dated 1603. It is engraved with ‘Welcome to my friends’ carved beneath. When the seat is sat on the 'capture' mechanism is released and a pair of iron bars trap the 'victim' in the chair. There is a concealed release mechanism to rear at base. (Estimate £25,000-£35,000)
Mission Commentary for Apollo 13, NASA 1970.
Comprising mimeographed transcripts of the exchanges between the command module and Launch Control and later Mission Control Centre, Houston, 11-17 April 1970, covering the mission from before lift-off until re-entry, contained in two ring- binders.
(Estimate £3,000-£5,000)
Mission Commentary for Apollo 13, NASA 1970. Comprising mimeographed transcripts of the exchanges between the command module and Launch Control and later Mission Control Centre, Houston, 11-17 April 1970, covering the mission from before lift-off until re-entry, contained in two ring- binders. (Estimate £3,000-£5,000)
The Harrods-Selfridge Wager Prize.
A George V silver cigar box in the form of an architectural model of Harrods department store.
(Estimate £70,000-£100,000)
The Harrods-Selfridge Wager Prize. A George V silver cigar box in the form of an architectural model of Harrods department store. (Estimate £70,000-£100,000)
A three-rotor Enigma cipher machine, circa 1939.
It has an electric core, three aluminium rotors each stamped WaA69, raised 'QWERTZ' keyboard with crackle black painted metal case, plugboard in the front with six patch leads and green night-time filter, in wooden carrying case.
(Estimate: £40,000-£60,000)
A three-rotor Enigma cipher machine, circa 1939. It has an electric core, three aluminium rotors each stamped WaA69, raised 'QWERTZ' keyboard with crackle black painted metal case, plugboard in the front with six patch leads and green night-time filter, in wooden carrying case. (Estimate: £40,000-£60,000)

Do you fancy getting your hands on an original World War Two enigma machine? How about a full set of armour?

Christie's Out Of The Ordinary sale brings together a bizarre array of lots that don't easily fit into the auction house's more traditional collections.

Among our favourites is an oak Capture Chair with leg locking devices, (estimate: £25,000-35,000), which can trap anyone who sits in it with the metal leg-locking bars hidden inside the chair. The captive can only be released by using a mechanism at the back of the chair.

There's also a dog skeleton which has been covered in 60,000 Swarovski crystals and platinum by artist Moogstones, in what could be considered a less extravagant version of Damien Hirst's £1million diamond-encrusted skull, For The Love of God. The sparkly skeleton is expected to sell for £20,000-£30,000.

With prices ranging from £500-£120,000 many items are likely to be out of the reach of the average pocket, but there's a chance to see the lots at the free-to-enter saleroom.

Visit Christie's at 85 Old Brompton Road in South Kensington, until 2 September. Opening hours are 9am-5pm weekdays, 11am-5pm weekends. Free to view (but don't cough during an auction).

All photos: Christie's Images Ltd 2014

Last Updated 06 August 2014