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HEADS OF DEPARTMENTS
Antiquities: Brett Hammond
More than thirty years ago, as a regular visitor to London’s collectors’ markets, Brett Hammond formed an interesting collection of ancient British coins and antiquities. He soon progressed to dealing, taking stalls and tables at various venues where he gained a reputation for the variety of his stock, and for his willingness to share his widening knowledge of Celtic, Romano-British and Anglo-Saxon material. Following a period in the USA in which he witnessed the enthusiasm of collectors for a diverse range of periods and cultures, Brett decided to expand the range of material on offer. He launched TimeLine Originals in the 1990s, seizing the opportunity afforded by rapid progress in digital photography, internet sales and email to create a twenty-four-hour shopping opportunity for clients worldwide.
By late 2009, the decision was taken to launch TimeLine Auctions with Brett as CEO, in order to expand the opportunities for clients to buy and sell coins and artefacts of all periods and cultures. The first sale took place in March 2010, preceded by online viewing and a high-quality sales catalogue. Subsequent sales have built steadily on the early successes of the venture.
Brett continues to contribute editorial features and articles to a number of periodicals, and is presently working on the third volume of the popular British Artefacts series of books. He is the Chairman of the Association of International Antiquities Dealers (AIAD). He also owns the award-winning Wildwinds coin site; a fully sourced, referenced and illustrated database which now holds over 67,000 images of ancient coins – an invaluable resource for collectors.
Coins: Christopher Wren
Christopher Wren began by collecting coins and artefacts found around his home in Kent, close to the medieval Pilgrim’s Way to Canterbury, an area rich area in artefacts of many periods including Palaeolithic flints. Collecting stone tools awoke an interest in the principles of typology, and developed his keen eye for details of form and patination. These skills extended into the area of hammered coinage.
Between 1992 and 1995, his three volumes on short-cross and long-cross coins were published and awarded the prestigious RNS Lhotka Prize. He has also assisted with the editing of several volumes of the Sylloge of Coins of the British Isles, particularly for the coinages of Henry III and he regularly attends museum open days and societies to speak and exhibit.
Collectables: Shaun Evans
With several years collecting experience to recommend him, Shaun was appointed to assist TimeLine in coping with its expanding business across all our websites. His network of contacts has already helped TimeLine Auctions and TimeLine Originals to reach new clients from beyond our current circle of traditional antiquarians, curators and high-end purchasers.
We confidently anticipate that our Collectables Department will grow rapidly over the next few years, and that the range of lots passing through our online auctions will broaden into exciting new areas. Shaun as a member of the TimeLine Team will benefit us going forward.
Press Desk: Edward Fletcher BA (Hons)
Throughout his career as a journalist, Edward has maintained a lifelong interest in history and collecting. He is presently at work on an encyclopedia of metal detector finds from across the world. In exchange for access to TimeLine Auction’s vast archive of images, he edits and proofs many of the texts passing through our offices.
Edward’s best-known books have included: British Buried Treasure Hoards, A Fortune Under Your Feet, Digging Up Antiques and the Reading Land, Rivers And Beaches series. He also fields media enquiries, to which they can be initially addressed to the email address above.
Auctioneer: Robin Baker FRNS
Robin Baker took an interest in coinage from a very early age, which after nearly 50 years has yet to abate. A Fellow of the Royal Numismatic Society, Honorary Life Member of the Havering Numismatic Society & a member of the British, Ipswich & Essex Numismatic Societies he lists his core interests (in no particular order) as late Roman bronze, Saxon, worldwide proofs, patterns, minting errors & tools, German papermoney & applied numismatics.
From a commercial point of view his strengths lie in Roman Imperial, modern European, British colonial coins & paper money in general. Beyond this he has the honour to be Her Netherlands Majesty’s Honorary Consul in East Anglia, Past President of the International General Produce Association, a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Butchers of the City of London and a Freeman of the Company of Arts Scholars, Dealers & Collectors. He has been published on a number of occasions for both numismatic & other subjects.
Dr. Ronald Bonewitz
(Minerals, Gem Stones & Fossils)
Dr. Ronald L. Bonewitz is a trained geologist with a life-long interest in Mexican and Central American archaeology, having travelled extensively in Mayan Yucatan, interviewed Maya Indians, and explored previously unmapped Mayan sites on the island of Cozumel. He has been a specialist consultant to several archaeological excavations in the USA. He has worked as a geologist in the oil industry, involved in the exploration and location of oil and uranium, as well as gold mining and the underground testing of nuclear weapons. He has also worked in the aviation industry, specialising in helicopters, and having qualified as a psychologist he has lectured worldwide on personal development.
Dr. Bonewitz is the author of a range of books on his many professional and personal interests including natural philosophy, crystals, minerals, alternative methods of healing, personal development, and the mysteries of ancient Mayan culture. His catalogue of titles includes Rock and Gem: the Definitive Guide to Rocks, Minerals, Gemstones and Fossils (2005); Teach Yourself Hieroglyphics (2001); Pyramids (Beginners’ Guides) (2000); Wisdom of the Maya: An Oracle of Ancient Knowledge for Today (2001); The Smithsonian Nature Guide to Rocks and Minerals (2011) and The Smithsonian Nature Guide to Gemstones (2012).
(Far Eastern & Ethnographic)
Peter, an alumnus of Merchant Taylor’s School, founded in the third quarter of the 16th century, particularly enjoyed history, Latin, English and sport as well as collecting coins, stamps and a variety of curiosities during his growing-up years. Merchant Taylor’s ethos is as old as the school itself: “It is not a mind, not a body that we have to cultivate, but a man, and we cannot divide him” (thus spake MTS’s first headmaster, Richard Mulcaster, in 1561). Some notable past alumni include various remarkable individuals such as Clive of India, Scott of the Antarctic and Boris Karloff (of Dracula fame). Such holistic thinking inspired Peter to join Knight, Frank & Rutley at the age of eighteen, having previously worked with an oriental art dealer, and then Christie’s of St. James’s the following year.
Peter gradually rose up through the ranks becoming an auctioneer, head of Chinese jade / snuff bottles, head of Japanese / Korean art and then Director. After 16 successful, enjoyable, stimulating and much-travelled years, Peter left Christie’s to take a year’s sabbatical before becoming a Vice-President at Sotheby’s New York. During his time at Christie’s and Sothebys’ he produced more than eight catalogues per year, resulting in a total of more than 250 over the course of his career. His major specialisms included netsuke and inro, Japanese ceramics, lacquer and metalwork, Chinese jade and snuff bottles. Eventually tiring of the Big Apple, he returned to the UK to seek new challenges and take up consultancy posts at Phillips and Bonhams as well as Habsburgs, Geneva.
Since the mid-1990s, Peter has greatly enjoyed working as an independent Far Eastern art consultant advising various museums, auction houses and private collectors in connection with Japanese, Korean, Chinese and South East Asian Art (as well as some Ethnographic Art, a personal passion of his, particularly American Indian culture). He has written many articles over the years and after helping to organise an exhibition of Japanese ceramics belonging to the Lupin Foundation at the New Orleans Museum of Art in 1997, he then co-wrote the exhibition catalogue. In more recent times, he spends much of his time travelling, following the International Art Market and indulging his passion for Far Eastern and South East Asian culture, whilst being involved in further challenging and unusual projects.
Peter Clayton, FCILIP, Dip, Arch, FSA, FRNS
Peter is an Egyptologist, archaeologist and numismatist who worked for many years at the British Museum and excavated on sites in England and Egypt. He is one of only two Honorary Members of the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. He has lectured widely in England, Europe and Australia on Egyptology, archaeology, antiquities and numismatics. When Peter left the British Museum in 1980 he was invited to found the Antiquities Department for B. A. Seaby, and remained head of it until 2010. He was also the Founding Chairman of the Antiquities Dealers Association (ADA) in 1982, and is currently the Treasurer of that body.
Peter appears on radio and television programmes dealing with current archaeological and Egyptological topics and has been featured in a number of educational programmes on British and American television. He is the author of several international best-selling titles including ‘Chronicle of the Pharaohs’ (now translated into fifteen languages), ‘The Rediscovery of Ancient Egypt’, ‘The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World’ and many others.
He was the Consulting Editor and Book Reviews Editor of ‘Minerva’, the International Review of Ancient Art and Archaeology, which he founded for Dr J.M. Eisenberg in 1990. He is a member of the Treasure Valuation Committee, The British Museum, and Expert Advisor for coins and antiquities to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, the National Art Collections Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and acts as advisor to several departments of the British Museum and to many national and archaeological museums. He is a Freeman of the City of London, and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Farriers and of the Company of Arts Scholars.
Dane Kurth (Greek & Roman)
Dane’s schooldays were spent at a north-west of England high school where field trips to archaeological digs sparked her interest in ancient history. She bought her first ancient coin in the 1970s and began to build the foundations of her extensive knowledge of Greek and Roman numismatics. A French and German speaker, with a good understanding of Italian, she enjoys translating 19th century numismatic works, and placing them in the public domain.
A member of the world-renowned Wildwinds website, Dane played a major role in bringing the archive to its award winning status. She was pleased to accept TimeLine Original's offer to appoint her Curator of Wildwinds following the death of its founder. Praise from around the world has been bestowed on her curatorship. In addition to her Wildwinds duties, Dane compiles the popular online Helvetica's RIC Lists, used by collectors, museums and coin dealers worldwide. In England PAS officers rely heavily on this research when identifying finds.
David Miller (Jewellery & General Antiquities)
David has been a professional dealer specialising in Greek and Roman coins since 1968, when he left the British Museum to join Spinks' ancient coinage department. Later he became Corbitt & Hunter's London manager, then a partner in Italo Vecchi's family firm. From 1973, he headed the coin department at Stanley Gibbons Currency Ltd, eventually rising to joint managing director, and in 1980 joined California's Superior Stamp and Coin Co. as their European representative. Two years later, he started he own business as a numismatic and fine art consultant.
He has published articles on a variety of historical subjects both in the UK and USA, and has appeared on television identifying and valuing ancient and medieval artefacts and coins. David has been a member of the BNTA since its inception in 1975, serving on its council and various specialist committees. Presently, he is a valuer for the Treasure Valuation Committee, specialising in coins and antiquities from 2000 BC to 1600 AD. Now in his seventieth year, he remains active, holding stalls at Coin-Ex, the London and Bloomsbury coin fairs, and travelling widely in Europe and the USA.
Stephen Pollington (Anglo-Saxon & Viking)
Stephen has been studying the linguistic and material culture of early mediaeval Europe for more than thirty years, during which time he has written more than a dozen books on various aspects of Anglo-Saxon England and its neighbours. His research interests range from early medical literature to the manufacture and use of edged weapons, the contents and distribution of burial mounds to the social phenomenon of communal feasting, the nature of religion in the Iron Age to the runic writing systems of Scandinavia and England.
His ‘Wordcraft’, first published in 1994 and still in print, provides a Modern English to Old English dictionary and thesaurus and has been a mainstay title for students wishing to compose in Old English or to familiarise themselves with specific areas of vocabulary. ‘The English Warrior’, first published in 1996, is an examination of the warrior ethos of the Anglo-Saxons and their neighbours, providing Old English texts and translations for several poems and excerpts from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and an overview of weapons and warfare. ‘Meadhall – The Feasting Tradition in Anglo-Saxon England’ (2003; 2nd edition, 2011) offers an introduction to the role of feast-giving and hosting in early mediaeval societies (Anglo-Saxon, Welsh, Irish and Scandinavian) and has proven popular with historians trying to understand the dynamics of the world of ‘Beowulf’ and the role of public gift-giving. In 2001 he published ‘Leechcraft’, an examination of the medical traditions of Anglo-Saxon England through fresh translations of three key texts: the ‘Lacnunga’, ‘Old English Herbarium’ and ‘Bald’s Leechbook’. In 1997, ‘First Steps in Old English’, an introductory course in the language was published, and is now in its third edition. He produced a double CD of readings in Old English, including many standard texts; students have found the spoken texts make a great deal of difference when approaching the language for the first time. More recently, in ‘Elder Gods – The Otherworld in Early England’ (2011), the evidence for pre-Christian religion among the Anglo-Saxons was compiled, contrasted with the more copious Icelandic texts and with the challenging archaeological evidence.
In 2008, Stephen was asked to give a lecture at the Sutton Hoo Society Conference on the subject of the Anglo-Saxon Meadhall. In 2009 he was invited to be the keynote speaker at the Cambridge University conference on hospitality and gift-giving in the Middle Ages. He has lectured widely in the UK and abroad on aspects of early English history and material culture with particular emphasis on the finds from Sutton Hoo and the Staffordshire Hoard as well as on the ‘World of Beowulf’. Apart from appearances on television as a ‘talking head’, Stephen has also worked as script consultant in historical drama and provided voice-over on series such as Michael Wood’s ‘The Great British Story’ (2012); he also appeared in ‘Michael Wood on Beowulf’ (2010). Stephen collaborated with Brett Hammond and Lindsay Kerr on the 2010 book 'Wayland’s Work', documenting Germanic material culture in the post-Roman world; from there developed a close working relationship with TimeLine.
Italo Vecchi (Coins & General)
Italo Vecchi was born in Modena, Italy, in 1948 and has been a professional numismatist since 1971. His varied numismatic career has taken him to appointments based in London, Bern and Zurich. In the early 1980s his company, V.C. Vecchi & Sons, partnered Bonhams in a series of coin auctions held in London. Italo later became sole proprietor of this venture. From January 1996 to December 1999, his company Italo Vecchi Ltd held a series of auctions in London, principally of ancient coins. In early 2000 Italo was appointed Managing Director (Europe) of Classical Numismatic Group, Inc, a position from which he retired at the end of 2012.
Apart from compiling auction catalogues, Italo has written, edited and produced many books, including 'Archaic Greek Silver Coinage, The 'Asyut' Hoard', by Martin Price and Nancy Waggoner in 1975; 'Coins and their Cities', by Martin Price and Bluma Trell in 1977; 'The Syro-Phoenician Tetradrachms and Their Fractions', by Michel and Karin Prieur in 2000; 'Italian Cast Coinage, Aes Grave' in 1979 (co-written); 'A Find of Silver from the Mint of Rome for the Period 640-750', in 1985 (co-written); and 'The Coinage of the Rasna: A Study in Etruscan Numismatics', in five articles from 1988 to 1999.
His latest publication project is an extensive review of Etruscan numismatic history titled 'Etruscan Coinage' (Part 1 in 2 volumes), being a corpus of the struck coinage of the Rasna, together with an historical and economic commentary on the issues in gold, silver and bronze.
(Beads & Associated Jewellery)
After art school in London, Stefany decided to specialise in the study and creation of beads because so little was known of their origins, materials, techniques, traditions and history. She made and collected every type of bead, designed jewellery with beads, and did original research.
Stefany ran a successful bead shop in Portobello Road for almost 20 years, wrote three popular books on the subject and founded the Bead Society of Great Britain in 1989. She is a committee member of the Bead Study Trust, and belongs to the Society of Bead Researchers and Society of Jewellery Historians, etc. Stefany has lectured on aspects of beads at local and international conferences and to special interest groups.
Richard Falkiner, FSA (Jewellery & General Antiquities)
Laura Proffitt, Ph.D (Classical & General)