Inscribed in every contract ever written. Spoken in every deal ever made. The value of money is the one truth that every person knows.Azul i Camra i Riqueza
The public auctions in Anvil are seasonal opportunities for citizens to sell their goods. Goods are sent to the Bourse in advance by Imperial citizens who want a good price but have neither the inclination nor the time to attend the meetings at Anvil. A proportion of lots are left open for the submission of items by those who do attend the summits. When trade relations with Foreign Nations are favourable, items may even be send to the public auction from outside the Empire.
Most goods sold are materials, herbs, mana crystals, liao, building materials (mithril, weirwood & white granite) and occasionally even ilium, but any item of value which it is legal to sell may be submitted. Such offerings include art and crafts, artisan-crafted items, food and drink, and occasionally more remarkable lots such as invitations to exclusive parties, or commissions by notable artists, poets or musicians.
Public auctions are held on each evening of the first two days of the summit. The timing and location can be found in the event schedule and on signs around Anvil.
Each auction has a maximum of 60 lots, and usually lasts up to one hour. The Senate building is the preferred location, but occasionally another meeting or event will take precedence and the Auction will move to another suitable location.
The proceedings are lead by an auctioneer, who is usually an Agent of the Bourse, a member of the civil service. Their role is a fine balance of keeping order, ensuring fair access to the auction for all present and hosting a time-honoured Imperial spectacle.
Another Agent of the Bourse will usually be responsible for recording the the winning bids, taking the money and giving out the purchased items.
The usual format is as follows:
- The Auctioneer reads out a section of the list (usually 10 lots)
- Bidding begins on each item in turn, with the Auctioneer suggesting an opening bid if none is forthcoming
- A clear unique bid is taken from the first person seen and heard to give it, and bidding goes up until a winner is determined
- The winner goes immediately to the Auction clerk to pay and receive their item
At the end of each section there is a short pause to clear any queue of purchasers and then the process repeats
Bidding is usually in Crowns and quarter/half crowns with building materials and Ilium in Thrones and Crowns. Citizens are asked to have payment ready when bidding in order to keep things moving smoothly.
As the lots submitted in Anvil tend to be more unusual, these may be taken one at a time allowing for further information from the seller or short testimonials from the assembled on the characteristics of the item on offer.
Selling in the Auction
Citizens wishing to add an item to the public auction may do so at the Civil Service Hub. The deadline is 1 hour before the auction starts, or when the list reaches 60 lots whichever is sooner. To give fair opportunity to all citizens to enter items in the auction, each citizen may enter a maximum of 3 lots, and each of their lots must be of a different type.
Mixed lots may be entered if desired - a method sometimes used by the magistracy to dispose of the seized assets of criminals, the profits of sale being equivalent to a fine.
Items of food and drink are often entered, but citizens are asked make information on the ingredients available where possible to enable prospective buyers to make an informed choice on whether or not to bid.
The seller does not need to be present at the auction, but more unusual items do sell better if there is someone there to give details.
Cost of listing
There is a listing fee of 10 rings for each item which is non-refundable. If the item sells then one tenth of the sale value will be deducted for administrative costs, less the 10 rings listing fee. If one tenth is 10 rings or less, nothing further is deducted.
The seller can place a reserve on an item at no additional cost. The item will not be sold if the reserve is not met, and can be collected after the auction from the Hub. If the seller is present in the auction, they can choose to accept the highest bid offered if they wish.
Submitting the item
Items need to be with the civil service by an hour before the auction. They are usually brought when the listing fee is paid, but can be brought later if required. Items such as herbs, mana and magical items will only be accepted with a suitable phys-rep, which can be a suitable-sized container if preferred (e.g. a pouch for mana or herbs, a sack or large box for armour).
Unless the seller specifies that the phys-rep should be sold as part of the lot, it must be returned by the purchaser to the Hub and the seller can collect from there later in the event. Any phys-reps not collected by the end of the event will be taken to lost property at GOD.
Auction earnings will be available at the Hub the following morning after the Auction. In exceptional circumstances (e.g. if the seller will be leaving before the following morning) the money may be available earlier by arrangement with the civil service.