Two pens found languishing in a drawer in a Staffordshire home are among the rarest in the world and worth thousands of pounds – much to the amazement of their stunned owner.
They were discovered by Adrian Rathbone, associate director of Hansons Auctioneers, by chance.
He said: “I visited a Lichfield client on a routine home visit and, as an afterthought, they showed me the pens which they’d inherited.
“One, a Montblanc Sir Winston Churchill limited edition fountain pen, received a guide price of £15,000 to £25,000 while the other, a Montblanc Pope Julius II limited edition fountain pen, was estimated at £4,000 to £6,000. Together, they could make in excess of £30,000 at auction.
“The owner had no idea of their rarity or value and had to sit down after I told them the pens were among the rarest in the world. They’d been stuck in a desk drawer.
“They’re exceptionally rare finds. Lavished with gold and diamonds, they were made to exacting standards to honour important historical figures and display superb quality and workmanship.”
The Montblanc Sir Winston Churchill limited edition fountain pen features an 18 karat pink gold barrel inlaid with black and brown tortoiseshell lacquer bands. The cap top is ringed with 53 diamonds to commemorate 1953, the year Churchill was knighted and received the Nobel Prize for Literature.
The former British prime minister’s great legendary ‘V for Victory’ sign is echoed in the design of the clip and its 18K gold nib is engraved with Churchill’s portrait.
Mr Rathbone said: “Sir Winston Churchill, a dedicated Montblanc fancier, was voted the greatest Briton of all time for his courageous dedication to the cause of freedom and the famous pen manufacturer certainly did him justice with this creation.”
The other Montblanc, a Pope Julius II fountain pen, 2005 Patron of the Arts limited edition, is crafted in 18 karat gold fretwork and includes guilloche enamel, five diamonds in the clip, mother of pearl Montblanc star insignia to the cap cover and an 18ct gold nib engraved with the emblem of the Pope.
Mr Rathbone said: “Pope Julius II was head of the Roman Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 1503 to 1513. Nicknamed the Warrior Pope or Fearsome Pope, he was a keen patron of the arts. He supported Michelangelo and Raphael, commissioned the frescoes in Rome’s Sistine Chapel and ordered the construction of St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City.
“Pens of this quality are sought after by keen collectors across the world and could potentially give their owner something very impressive to write home about.”
The pens are due to be sold in Hansons’ July 3-9 Summer Fine Art Auction, at Bishton Hall. Wolseley Bridge, Staffordshire, ST17 0XN. To find out more or to arrange a free valuation or home visit, email [email protected]