We consider ourselves leading specialists when it comes to selling property at auction. The recent results of the event, Australia’s real estate occasion of the year, illustrate this.
Over 2,000 individuals came, 333 bids were registered, and 54 houses were sold on the day, adding up to a total sales volume exceeding $40 million. In honour of The Event, we’ve found five fascinating and weird facts about auctions—believe them or not. Have a look at vintage railroad memorabilia
The Roman Empire as a whole was once auctioned off.
In the year 193 AD, the world’s most advanced civilization was once offered for sale to the highest bidder. The period’s praetorian guards killed Pertinax, the emperor. Realising they were in charge of the empire; they made the decision to make money off their deed by putting it up for sale. After a heated auction, Didius Julianus was chosen as the winner for a hefty sum about equal to $1 billion US dollars. Julianus’s brief reign as emperor shows that he failed to fulfil his promise and was removed from power right afterwards.
Records of auctions date back to 500 BC.
According to the famed Greek historian Herodotus, the first auction took place at least 2517 years ago. These early auctions were said to have taken place in Babylon, which, at the height of its might, was the biggest metropolis on earth. The Babylonian metropolis and empire finally fell apart, and Iran today stands in their stead.
A candle that was nailed to a wall was used to time auctions.
Auctions were frequently conducted in an odd and fascinating manner in ancient England. The auctioneer and bidders assembled in a pitch-black room with a single candle affixed to the wall. The auctioneer would light the candle to start the bidding, and participants would scramble to submit their offers. The last bidder would then be proclaimed the winner, and the auction would end when the candle melted around the pin and dropped to the ground. The phrase “flaming out” at auction, which describes bidders who place excessively high or enthusiastic bids early in the selling process, now has a literal explanation.
A New Zealand-friendly product was previously sold by an Australian.
In 2006, a cheeky Australian put the entire nation of New Zealand up for sale, displaying the true colours of the Trans-Tasman rivalry. His beginning price was $1, and the highest bid was only $1300, which, in our opinion, is a great deal for such a stunning nation.
Unfortunately, immediately after going viral, eBay’s rules and conditions were discovered to be broken, and the auction was quickly taken down.
The gavel was a spear once.
Although gavels and auctioneers emerged later in the lengthy history of auctions, the proceedings were somewhat more theatrical in the beginning. The ‘Magister Auctionarium’ was the name of the auctioneer, and to open the sale, he would launch it with a spear rather than a gavel.