Colonel Stewart Francis Newcombe was already a legend in the deserts of Arabia before he was joined in Cairo during the early months of the First World War by a group of extraordinary specialists in Middle Eastern affairs. One member of this group was T.E. Lawrence who went on to achieve worldwide fame. Colonel Newcombe's story, like those of other unsung figures in the Anglo-Arabian panoply, has been eclipsed by the legend of ´Lawrence of Arabia´, and has languished in the dusty recesses of regimental records, government files or in the elliptical words of Lawrence’s book Seven Pillars of Wisdom. However, S.F. Newcombe´s untold story is there to be told. IN THE SHADOW OF THE CRESCENT is a story of extraordinary exploits and courage, coupled with Newcombe's own legendary and inexhaustible supply of energy and of remarkable adventures under the very noses of the Ottoman authorities – full of danger, intrigue and perhaps more surprisingly, of romance during Newcombe's captivity in Turkey.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Auction results

Results just in! The cream silk desert robe belonging to T.E. Lawrence has sold for £3000 plus auction fees. 

Serab runner - £1700
The second Lawrence item was a serab runner, NW Persia 1890, an ivory field with four gul and flowerhead filled medallions, 154 x 32.5in.
Estimate £300-500

This lot was sold with a letter of provenance from the vendor whose parents were close friends of T.E. Lawrence and the Lawrence family and two photographs showing the interior of a Middle eastern room bedecked with carpets. The carpet was given by T.E. Lawrence to the vendor's father as a wedding present around 1914, and the event is mentioned p.198, The Home Letters of T.E.Lawrence, Blackwell, 1954. 

This has sold for £1700 plus auction fees.

Auction of T.E. Lawrence's silk robes

This morning the following lot will be auctioned at Gorringes Auction Sale in Lewes, East Sussex, England. It seems a low estimate but perhaps it has been set to provoke some interest. The same robe, along with a carpet that Lawrence brought back from Aleppo in about 1914 for a wedding gift for a family friend and which is also included in this sale, was first presented at Sotheby's Fashion auction in 1999. At that time it was set at £8,000-12,000. 
A cream silk desert robe belonging to T.E. 'Lawrence of Arabia,' c.1916, of simple form with silk thread buttons and plaited loop fastenings, the cuffs edged with silk braid, fully lined with an internal hanging cord stamped in black ink H157 and another woven label embroidered 150, along with a large black and white photograph of Lawrence, and numerous other photographs and newspaper clippings, robe length 110cm. Estimate £1,500-2,000

This lot is sold with a note of provenance from the vendor whose parents were close friends of T.E. Lawrence and the Lawrence family, and a collection of letters from T.E. Lawrence's brother to Mrs Hutchins.