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the competitive calls made in bridge and other games before play begins, undertaking to win a given number of tricks if a certain suit is trumps
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



in international trade, a method of selling certain goods (such as fur pelts, tobacco, and tea) in separate lots. Prior to an auction the goods (or samples of them) are exhibited for the inspection of possible buyers. The time and place of the auction are announced beforehand. The general conditions of the sale of goods are determined by the seller. The buyer is considered to be the person who during the course of the auction has offered the highest price. At an auction, in contrast to an ordinary sale, the seller is absolved from responsibility for the quality of the goods that are sold. In the USSR, international auctions for the sale of fur pelts are regularly held in Leningrad.

At the form of auction known as a public sale there is a forced sale of the property of people who cannot pay their debts. Goods are also sold if they have not been claimed on time from transportation and warehouse enterprises and in certain other cases.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The company lists over 3,000 auction houses and dealers worldwide and features approximately 90 million objects on its site.
Experienced auction houses are perhaps more successful in persuading the seller to lower the reservation price to match the available demand price.
According to the auction house selling the property, the building currently generates a turnover of approximately [pounds sterling]200,000 per annum, although the accounts should obviously be scrutinised by a potential bidder long before the auction itself.
If you're the successful bidder, you'll have to exchange contracts and pay a deposit (usually 10 per cent of the purchase price) and a fee to the auction house immediately.
The global reach of the major auction houses cannot be rivalled by most commercial galleries.
The firm also offers all of the typical services of a traditional auction house via its website: Valuation, authentication, curation, auction and all related services, including a full authenticity guarantee.
Although this conclusion may at first appear to be beneficial to auction houses (in light of Mr Thwaytes' argument that consignment for research should impose a higher standard of care) it may come as something of a surprise to auction houses that the same standard of care is owed to a consignor when researching a painting where there may be no prospect of a sale as when a painting is consigned specifically for sale.
Buying stuff at an auction house is truly fascinating.
Looking forward and bragging about his charms, Ponce de Leon says, "I can source art works for almost everyone." Behind this propensity for a big and varied inventory is a noble reason - to make young collectors start going to auction houses, the way they go to Starbucks, and to take away the stigma that auction houses are only for the rich and the elite.