Historic Collection from Valdemar’s Castle up for Auction

A large collection of paintings, furniture and collector’s items from Valdemar’s Castle on the island of Tåsinge is sold at auction at Bruun Rasmussen Auctioneers on 21 September in Copenhagen.

You now have the chance to bring home a piece of Danish history, when a large collection of paintings, furniture and collector’s items from Valdemar’s Castle on the island of Tåsinge is sold at auction at Bruun Rasmussen Auctioneers on 21 September in Copenhagen.

History buffs are probably familiar with the story about Denmark’s great naval hero Niels Juel, who in 1677 defeated the Swedish fleet at the Battle of Køge Bay and subsequently settled at Valdemar’s Castle on Tåsinge. His family has remained here for 12 generations and nearly 350 years. One of the castle’s previous owners was Christian the 4th’s son Valdemar Christian, whom the castle was named after. During the wars between Denmark and Sweden in the 17th century, Valdemar’s Castle suffered extensive damage. The turning point came in 1678, when Niels Juel was given the opportunity to acquire the surrounding lands and the manor house itself.

You can now bid on several unique items from the historic castle as they come up for auction at Bruun Rasmussen Auctioneers. These include artwork, furniture, and collector’s items, says Director of Valuation and Sales at Bruun Rasmussen, Kasper Nielsen.

“This rare collection from Valdemar’s Castle is a testimony to the rich history of the place and not least the repairs and interior changes that Niels Juel and his descendants have introduced through three hundred years. We are honored to have the chance to present these objects, that in each their own way present a small piece of Danish history,” says Kasper Nielsen.

Historic Rarities

The auction includes both chamber-loading pistols, saluting cannons, a pair of globes by Anders Åkerman, various faience items and an East Indian porcelain bowl with a motif of Christiansborg Palace and the Dock—all of it showing the different interests of the Castle’s owners through the years. You can also bid on a number of portraits depicting several of Niels Juel’s descendants, which have hung on the walls of the castle.

Among the historic rarities, we find a small casket from ca. 1805, attributed to the Danish Golden Age painter Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg, estimated at DKK 600,000—800,000. Inside the lid is a surprising scene made for the male guests in the gentlemen’s private quarters of Valdemar’s Castle, and it also shows the general interest of the period in erotic genre paintings.

In addition, there is a portrait of Valdemar’s Castle’s previous owner, Christian the IV’s son, Valdemar Christian. The Danish King had the main building constructed in the years 1639-1644 for his son. However, Valdemar Christian ended up spending most of his time abroad, and in 1656 he died at the age of only 34. The offered portrait of the young Valdemar Christian is painted by Reinhold Timm and estimated at DKK 300,000-500,000.

The Naval Hero Niels Juel (1629 to 1697)

The naval hero Niels Juel became famous for his heroic exploits in the service of Denmark—for instance the conquering of the island of Gotland in 1676. His greatest achievement came with the naval battle in Køge Bay the following year in 1677. Here he helped secure Denmark a resounding victory over the Swedish fleet, which lost 20 ships, while the Danes lost not a single one. Juel became famous both in Denmark and abroad for his efforts, and at the same time he collected a handsome sum of prize money from the value of the captured enemy ships. Instead of receiving this sum in cash, he was allowed to buy most of the land around Valdemar’s Castle from King Christian V at a very favourable price.

Niels Juel acquired the castle in 1678 and initiated an extensive restoration of the castle itself. The architecture changed during the following years from a style influenced by the Renaissance to a more Baroque style which was in vogue at the time. These different styles and others can also be seen in the interior.

The offered lots from Valdemar’s Castle will be up for auction at Bruun Rasmussen on 21 September at 2 pm in our Copenhagen saleroom.

“Going once, going twice. Sold to the lady in the front row”. For 75 years, Bruun Rasmussen Auctioneers has sold art, antiques, design, jewellery, wristwatches and collector’s items in the heart of Copenhagen. It was Arne Bruun Rasmussen who founded the auction house at Bredgade 33 in 1948, and until 2022 the Bruun Rasmussen family owned the company. Today, the company is owned by the British auction house Bonhams—one of the world’s leading and oldest auction houses.

Being a part of Bonhams, means that Bruun Rasmussen has joined a global network, which benefits both the art and the customers, the latter has gained access to far more auctions and the former has a better chance of achieving the market’s best hammer prices. The goal is to constantly confirm to our customers that Bruun Rasmussen is a sought-after auction house with the highest expertise in valuation and sales. Bonhams and Bruun Rasmussen share the core values of knowledge, credibility, commitment and renewal, and the old Copenhagen auction house will thus continue to base its business on its well-known values under the auspices of Bonhams.

With CEO Jakob Dupont at the helm, an extensive digitization process has taken place during the past years, making the auction house a significant player on the international market. With solid experience and in-depth knowledge complemented by highly professional advice and appraisal service, the company is the link between sellers and interested buyers from all over the world. Every year, 70,000 unique works of art are sold at three types of auctions—the traditional Live Auctions and the two web-based auctions Online Auction and Direct Auction.