Over 6,500 mainly Victorian Christmas cards as well as other historic greeting cards go under the hammer tomorrow (15 December) at Dominic Winter Auctioneers tomorrow as a private collection is put up for auction.
The greeting cards, split into 28 lots are estimated to go for between £6,500 and £10,000.
The cards are from the private collection of George Fleming, who amassed the collection over some nearly 50 years. In an article for Antique Collecting magazine George said of his collection: “My collection began by accident in 1970 on a visit to an antiquarian bookshop. Unimpressed by the books on offer, the owner offered me a battered scrapbook containing hundreds of greeting cards. Despite the age, the cards were in fine condition and immaculately printed in excellent colour lithography.”
His collection spans greeting card designs from the 1850s up to WW2 and a little after. All the well-known Victorian illustrators are represented in the collection, including Walter Crane, Kate Greenaway, Jane Dealy, Florence Upton, Rebecca Coleman and William Coleman.
One of the rarest cards in the collection is a card depicting Mother Christmas, from around 1870. The chromolithographed card, illuminated in gold, depicts Mother Christmas with wand, within a border of holly and toys, captioned above ‘With trumpets and with drums,/Lo! Mother Christmas comes.’ It is expected to fetch around £100.