Outstanding contents of thriller nation home up for grabs in once-in-a-lifetime sale

The Bar, one of the comfiest corners of the grand country house

© Christie’s Images Limited 2023

Adrian Hume-Sayer, Christie’s, Director, Head of Sale, told Tatler: ‘The house was a modern-day treasure chest furnished with the very best – from casually placed jewel-like paintings by the likes of Constable to the monumental works by de Dreux which presided over the dining room. All these amazing works of art, set against bold colours, made for a very glamorous country retreat, but it was also very comfortable, perhaps the most comfortable room being the bar with its tartan corner sofa and stacked hang of charming dog pictures centred on the magnificent work by Richard Ansdell. The provenance behind many of the works is also really compelling – from the enormous Irish regency dining table from Bantry House, Cork, to the exotic carved giltwood the Chinese panelled cabinets from Easton Neston, the splendid Dubois lacquer commode from the celebrated von Pannwitz collection and even a carpet commissioned by Louis XIV for the Palace du Louvre.’

The Return by Alfred de Dreux, 1859 (estimate £400,000-600,000)

© Christie’s Images Limited 2023

The pre-sale public exhibition will be on display at Christie’s in London from 3 to 8 February, ahead of the live auction on 9 February. Estimates for the lots start at £600, for two oversized pewter hip flasks with elegant leather carrying cases; and range up to £600,000, for Alfred de Dreux’s exquisite 1859 oil painting The Return, depicting a young boy on horseback coming back from hunting with his spoils.  

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