Guide to archery by author best known for duck decoy work hits the spot in Yorkshire sale

A leaf from Sir Ralph Payne- Gallwey’s archery manuscript, sold for £2600 by Tennants.

Compiled by Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey of Thirkleby Park in North Yorkshire, an illustrated manuscript on archery dating from the opening years of the last century has sold for £2600. It was part of a sale held in Leyburn by Tennants (20% buyer’s premium).

Extracted from Antiques Trade Gazette | Ian McKay

A leaf from Sir Ralph Payne- Gallwey’s archery manuscript, sold for £2600 by Tennants.

In the leaf shown above its author gives a detailed, illustrated account of an item of the archer’s equipment known as the ‘Turkish Thumb Ring’.

Where printed works are concerned, however, Payne-Gallwey is best known for his 1866 work on …Duck Decoys.

This work at Tennants also contains detailed notes on Turkish bows and arrows, complete with photographs, as here, showing Payne-Gallwey himself, tables of flight distances and illustrations, plus research into Chinese archery.

Finch’s furnishings

Sold at £800 was a 1767 inventory of the household furniture belonging to Lady Charlotte Finch of ‘Charlwood’, a house in Rickmersworth (sic) in Hertfordshire.

Running to a dozen pages and dealing with some 38 rooms, along with the courtyard garden and backyard, it was drawn up by Sam Spencer, an auctioneer, and W Gates, a cabinetmaker.

Their account, including travel expenses, meals, brandy and even 2d for the “poor woman at the gate”, is also attached. Lady Finch was a governess to the children of George III and Queen Charlotte from 1762-93.

Other highlights of the Leyburn sale on March 18 included one of 700 vellum copies of Sidonie Gabrielle Colette’s Regarde…, a 1929 folio illustrated with 20 pochoir coloured plates. It sold at £1000 via

Among lots of particular local interest was Thomas H English’s Memoir of the Yorkshire Esk Fishery Association of 1925. Illustrated with 17 plates, a map and containing a tipped-in letter from its author, it sold at £380.