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Menopausal Mother Nature

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2 Unknown Rembrandts Hidden in Private Collection for 200 Years Sparks Upcoming Auction

Christie’s auction house

A pair of small portraits made, perhaps spontaneously, of Rembrandt van Rijk’s distant in-laws were discovered recently among a private collection.

Never seen before, or known in any of the Rembrandt literature, the portraits could be the smallest he ever made, and greatly surprised the owners who had never imagined the true origin of the inherited pieces.

If previous sales are any indication, they could bring in between $6.25 million $10 million (£5 million and £8 million) at auction.

Dated to 1635, the paintings depict wealthy plumber Jan Willemsz van der Pluym and his wife Jaapgen Carels, who lived in the city of Leiden. Their son, Dominicus van der Pluym, married Rembrandt’s cousin, but rather than this being a distant and unnurtured inter-family connection, experts at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam say the nature of the portraits show there probably was great affection between the families and the painter.

The family of van der Pluym held onto the portraits until about 1760, until they were sold by a descendent to Polish buyers, who then sold them to French buyers, who then sold them to the 1st Baron of Glenlyon, James Murrary.

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“The pictures were immediately of terrific interest,” Henry Pettifer, international deputy chair of Old Master paintings at Christie’s auction house, told CNN, adding that the owners were also taken by surprise.

“I don’t think they had looked into it,” he said. “They didn’t have expectations for the paintings.”

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They are set for a pre-auction tour of Amsterdam and New York, before a final stop in London ahead of the sale.

“What’s extraordinary is that the paintings were completely unknown. They had never appeared in any of the Rembrandt literature of the 19th or 20h century,” said Pettifer. “They are not grand, formal commissioned paintings, I think they are the smallest portraits that he painted that we know of.”

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Singapore Sleuth Spends 8 Months Tracking Down a Man to Return Family Heirlooms–And Finally Succeeds

An art lecturer and collector from Singapore went on the journey of a lifetime to reunite World War II memorabilia with its owner after buying them at auction.

The grand adventure begin in 2022 when 39-year-old Wesley Leon Aroozoo bid on a collection of antique stamps, postcards, and articles that included an unmarked set of booklets which he discovered belonged to a pair of laborers in Nazi Germany.

The adventure ended 8 months later with a beautiful ending, that had a sort of “what goes around comes around” moral of the story.

Aroozoo loves vintage everything, and the story of his internet sleuthing, as recounted by, centers around the incredible insight he was able to glean into a German family separated by a continent, 10k miles, 80 years, and a world war.

Using the information he found within the booklets, Aroozoo determined they belonged to two brothers: Wolfgang and Woldamar Scheck.

The booklets were principally sheets meant for collecting a stamp at the end of a workday to prove they were employed—some horrible relic of Nazism’s fascist central planning efforts—but they also contained immigration papers and other family documents.

The stamp booklet – Photos courtesy of Wesley Aroozoo

“I think I’m a bit nuts when it comes to these things,” Aroozoo admitted to Mothership. “Most people would just look at it and go, ‘oh, that’s kind of cool’ and then keep it or sell it.”

SIMILAR HISTORICAL SLEUTHING: Wife of WWII Soldier Spends Decades to Reunite Japanese Family With Photo Album He Found on Okinawa –LOOK

“[But] if it was me—if I had interesting family documents from my great-grandfather or something—wouldn’t it be cool if someone gave it back to me?”

Aroozoo’s own family history is fairly impermeable, and would take a team of geneticists and bureaucrats to illuminate because in the misty past of poorly-managed government records, his surname had been misspelled; a hard end to all his attempts thus far to learn more about his own origins.

Tracking down the Schecks

The immigration papers contained within the booklets showed that Woldamar had immigrated to Australia in the 1950s. Aroozoo scoured social media for Australian residents with the surname Scheck, and sent messages gently explaining what he was trying to do.

After 8 months without any luck, Aroozoo came across an Excell spreadsheet that had made it onto Google and which contained the name “Michael Scheck” in the coding. He knew Michael was one of Woldamar’s 4 children, and so used a program to convert the code of the unopenable spreadsheet into a text document to try and confirm his findings.

MORE NEWS LIKE THIS: She Reunites Families with Lost Heirlooms for Free–Returning Over 500 Items to Thrilled Relatives

Buried in code inside, he found Michael’s name alongside the address of his place of work. Calling and getting notification that Michael was on holiday but would be told of Aroozoo’s request for contact upon his return, Aroozoo felt a rush of excitement.

Wesley and his Wife with Mr Scheck – Photos courtesy of Wesley Aroozoo

“From that stage (of the search), it became a different battle, it became about convincing the person that I am not a crazy person,” Aroozoo told Mothership.

Eventually, he did earn that trust, and Aroozoo and his wife flew to Brisbane to meet Scheck in a public place to reunite the man with his family heirlooms.

The collector and now one-time successful sleuth is fairly philosophical about the strange dedication he bent toward the effort of finding Michael, believing it’s his own lack of ancestral context that sent him running after someone else’s.

WATCH the six-minute Mothership documentary below to see what happened next… 

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17th Century Gold Ring Worth $12K Discovered by Retired Teacher in His Back Garden

A 17th-century gold ring is estimated to fetch at least $12,000 at a British auction, after being found by a retired school teacher in his back garden. The historic gold seal ring from 1620 was discovered by Richard McCaie, whilst he was planting a shrub. The 71-year-old discovered the ring about 10-inches deep on the […]

The post 17th Century Gold Ring Worth $12K Discovered by Retired Teacher in His Back Garden appeared first on Good News Network.

This Arctic US Air Base Has Its Eyes on Russia. But Climate is a Bigger Threat – InsideClimate News

THULE AIR BASE, Greenland—On the last Saturday in September, ice had already begun to spread across the Arctic waters at the dock, closing the port for months to come. The temperature was 24 degrees Fahrenheit. Snow swept across the airport…

Stolen Trove of Angkor Royal Jewelry Returned to Cambodia After Resurfacing in London

A trove of precious jewelry from Cambodia’s past has been repatriated after surfacing in London. Totaling 77 artifacts from the medieval kingdom of Angkor, they are believed to have been trafficked from the country during the tyranny of the Khmer Rouge and the civil wars that plagued the country during the 20th century. Angkor was […]

The post Stolen Trove of Angkor Royal Jewelry Returned to Cambodia After Resurfacing in London appeared first on Good News Network.

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