The thirty-year peregrination of the exquisite sinistral Ancillista velesiana Iredale, 1936: a chronology
Sinistral Ancillista velesiana Iredale, 1936

1979, Dec. 1. The rumor of this shell's existence is confirmed. Apparently taken by commercial (fishery) trawler off Cape Moreton, Queensland, Australia; it is in the possession of J. A. (Tony) Wilson of Shorncliffe, Queensland (Evans, 1979).

1982, June 28. "PS Mr. [sic] Raybaudi of Roma has one Ancilla in his collection. He paid $1,000 [American] in Australia" (Lan, 1982).

1984 Ancilla velesiana Iredale forma sinistrorsa allegedly named by Dr. Luigi Raybaudi Massilia [also known as L. M. Raybaudi]. This may have been in
Gemme del Mare, a sales catalogue, or in manuscript only.

1985, January. The specimen is first illustrated - on the cover of The Connoisseur of Seashells: dorsal and apertural views, and captioned: "Ancillista velesiana IREDALE, 1936/Forma sinistrorsa (Raybaudi, 1984)/UNICA UNIQUE; text states:"Ancilla velesiana IREDALE 1936 forma sinistrorsa (RAY. 1984) unique (96 mm) Cape Moreton. Gem. P o r." (Raybaudi, 1985).
Comments: Reason for parentheses inside quotes above is baffling. Note the operculum, still with the shell, is not that of this species. It appears to be that of a (dextral) member of the Amalda hilgendorfi (von Martens, 1897) group. It has been placed in a position 180 opposite its usual orientation with respect to the axis of the shell.

1987, June-August. The shell is again listed and illustrated in The Connoisseur of Seashells: "R21 ancillista [sic] velesiana f. sinistrorsa. A fantastic rarity (see cover of T. C. N. 1). It will be sold by private treaty ....... Price on request"]; back cover (dorsal view).

1988, Summer. Raybaudi relates that the sinistral A. velesiana was sold him by Tony Wilson of Brisbane in the seventies.

199?, 200? Enrico Biaggi of Milan obtains the shell from Raybaudi (Demertzis, 2009).

2009, May. Maria Demertzis of Nomos Pellas, Greece purchases the Biaggi Collection - including the fabled "Ancillista velesiana forma sinistrorsa (Raybaudi, 1984)" (Demertzis, 2009).

2009, July 22. Maria Demertzis sells the specimen to Dr. Peter G. Stimpson of Loudon, Tennessee (Demertzis, 2009). Dr. Stimpson provided the digital images, an edited version of which appears above.

Demertzis, M., 2009.  In litt. to H. G. Lee. August 11.
Evans, R., 1979. In litt. to H. G. Lee. Dec. 1.
Lan, T.C., 1982. In litt. to H. G. Lee. June 28.
[Raybaudi, L.M. (ed.)], 1985. [Ancillista velesiana IREDALE, 1936/Forma sinistrorsa (Raybaudi, 1984)/UNICA UNIQUE]. The Connoisseur of Seashells 1: [1] front cover: images, dorsal and apertural views, and [caption] and 16 ["Ancilla velesiana IREDALE 1936 forma sinistrorsa (RAY. 1984) unique (96 mm) Cape Moreton. Gem. P o r."]. January.
[Raybaudi, L.M. (ed.)], 1987. The Connoisseur of Seashells 15-16: 55 and 64 [back cover]. June-August.
[Raybaudi, L.M. (ed.)], 1988. The Connoisseur of Seashells 19: 14. Summer.

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