by Hadrien Rambach
Count Du Chastel was a Belgian aristocrat who received an inheritance at age 21 that freed him from any financial worries. He had started to collect ancient coins at 15, and three years later he had already decided that he would form an important collection which would then enter the national collections. He soon became one of the world’s main buyers, traveling to auctions in Paris (for the Gréau sale) or Milan (for the Borghesi sales).
He continually tried to improve the quality of the examples in his collection, which led to a final collection of 800 coins after the sale by Rollin and Feuardent in May 1889 of 646 Greek and Roman coins, for a total of 108,634 francs (1015 ounces of fine gold). In 1898, Ernest Babelon valued the collection at 320,000 francs, and it was purchased by the state for 300,000 francs (2800 ounces of fine gold).
- François de Callataÿ and Johan van Heesch, Greek and Roman coins from the du Chastel collection. Coin cabinet of the Royal Library of Belgium, London 1999; John Spring, Ancient Coins Auction Catalogues 1880-1980, London 2009, pp. 221-222.
- Hadrien Rambach, “Provenance glossary”, in Numismatica Ars Classica, Auction 91: the George W. La Borde collection of Roman aurei – part I, Zurich, 23 May 2016, pp. -.
- Hadrien Rambach, “Provenance glossary”, in Numismatica Ars Classica, Auction 99: the George W. La Borde collection of Roman aurei – part II, Zurich, 29 May 2017, pp. 47-63.
- Hadrien Rambach, “Provenance glossary”, in Numismatica Ars Classica, Auction 105: the George W. La Borde collection of Roman aurei – part III, Zurich, 9 May 2018, pp. 82-105.
This article was first published in a catalogue of auction house Numismatica Ars Classica.