Sotheby's is the world's fourth oldest auction house in continuous operation. The oldest auction house in operation is the Stockholms Auktionsverk founded in 1674, the second oldest is Göteborgs Auktionsverk founded in 1681 and third oldest being Uppsala Auktionskammare founded in 1731, all Swedish. Sotheby's predecessor, Baker's, was founded in London on 11 March 1744 when Samuel Baker presided over the disposal of "several hundred scarce and valuable" books from the library of a certain Rt. Hon. Sir John Stanley.
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