The Steinbock Horn Collection from the Estate of Carl-Anton Goess-Saurau and his wife Marie, née Mayr-Melnhof


Beaker with cover, Salzburg/Augsburg, mid 18th century steinbock horn, silver, gilded; h. 17.5 cm, starting price EUR 15.000

The steinbock was once the king of the Alps and was considered to be a walking pharmacy. Everything about it seemed to be magical and to have healing powers, the horns, the blood, the heart and even its dung. These were deadly beliefs because they led, by the 19th century, to the virtual extinction from the Alps of the once numerous animal. Today the animals have returned and the beliefs about them have faded, with only art now talking of the magic power that the steinbock used to have over people.

The glossy, lustrous horn of the steinbock, in particular, was perfect for turning into works of art. In the area round Salzburg from the 17th century, these horns were used to create unique artefacts that are much sought after by collectors.

Our expert, Mag. Roswitha Holly, is particularly proud to be able to present this extensive collection of rare and high quality artefacts from the Estate of Carl-Anton Goess-Saurau and his wife Marie, née Mayr-Melnhof in the upcoming autumn auction. “The two state goblets in particular, with their rich relief carving, are very rare and show how sought after this material was, even at court,” the expert explains, while also pointing out drinking horns and powder flasks with decorative silver ornaments, along with the snuffbox and elaborately designed caskets which should make every collector’s and hunter’s heart beat faster.

Mag. Roswitha Holly
T: +43 1 532 42 00-19

Photo: © Auktionshaus im Kinsky, Wien