A rare toffee tin given to South African soldiers by Jan Smuts and his wife Isie for Christmas during World War II in 1943 was snatched up by a militaria collector this weekend.
Former Springbok rugby player, Christiaan Scholtz, bought the tin at an auction in the UK years ago.
Speaking to The Sunday Times, Scholtz said he happened upon the rare collector’s item while moving house, explaining it was part of a package, which he bought years ago while travelling overseas.
Scholtz is a long-time antiques dealer and collector, focusing on militaria – especially from the Anglo-Boer War.
He said empty WW2 Christmas tins usually go for hundreds of rands, but tins with the items still inside are very rare and go for thousands.
“We’ve sold a chocolate Jan Smuts tin from 1941 for R4,000,” he told The Sunday Times.
On Sunday the tin already had a pre-bid offer for R1,200 and eventually sold for R1,880.
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SA diamond auctioned in Geneva
Last week AFP reported that a white diamond, larger than a golf ball, was sold by Christie’s auction house in Geneva.
The 228.31-carat stone was extracted from a mine in South Africa in the early 2000s and has been shown in Dubai, Taipei and New York ahead of the sale in Geneva.
Called ‘The Rock’, the perfectly symmetrical pear-shaped diamond, was in the hands of an unnamed owner from North America. It was bought by a telephone bidder following the auction at the Hotel des Bergues.
While there were high hopes that ‘The Rock’ would smash the previous world record of $33.7 million, fetched in the Swiss city in 2017 for a 163.41-carat gem, it only sold for a hammer price of $18.8 million.
*Compiled by Xanet Scheepers.