Le Moniteur des Ventes
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Sold out (Adjudication)

The word "adjugé" (sold) ends the bidding and transfers the title of ownership to the last bidder.

Bill of sale (Bordereau)

The written proof of purchase given by the auctioneer to the buyer describes the lot, its period, dimensions, catalogue number, the auction price and the buyer's premium. The bill of sale acts as a guarantee and proof of payment and ownership in case of dispute or for insurance purpose.

Assistant (Clerc) Assistant to the auctioneer, he can give estimates and take an absentee bid.
Sale handler (Commissionnaire)

He handles the lots during the sale and is also involved in the transportation service known as U.C.H.V. (see "transport"). Easily recognized because of their uniforms (black jacket with a red collar inscribed with a number), the "commissionnaires" or "Savoyards" (traditonally from the Savoy region) set up the rooms for the exhibits, handle the lots during the sale and, upon request, deliver goods.

Sale crier (Crieur) During the sale he moves among the audience. As his job title indicates, he calls the bids. He also delivers the purchase slips.
Bid (Enchères) A price offer higher than the initial one or the preceding bids.
Estimate (Estimation) Price or price range that should be close to the final price. The estimate is given by a person authorized by an auctionneer’s office or Drouot-Estimations.
Auctioneer's office (Étude) The office of a legal auctioneer, the only party authorized to conduct judicial sales, i.e. those required by law or the decision of a judge.
Expert (Expert) The expert appraisal of an item includes its identification and evaluation. In most specialized sales, the person authorized to conduct the sale is assisted by one or more experts whose expertise is recognized in their own field and who carry out the research necessary to the qualification of the object. A list of authorized experts is established by the Council of Sales, even if the voluntary sales companies can work with freelance experts.
Exhibits (Exposition) Usually, the items may be viewed the day before the sale from 11 A.M. to 6 P.M. (in Paris on Saturday for a Monday sale) and on the day of the sale from 11 A.M. to 12 A.M. Most exhibits take place on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Crazy bid (Folle enchère) On rare occasions, a careless bidder may be caught up in the bidding and find himself unable to pay the price. A "folle enchère" (literally "crazy bid") is then announced. The lot is auctioned again. If the new auction price does not reach the former one, the careless bidder will have to pay the difference!
Guarantee (Garantie) A ten-year guarantee certifies the authenticity of the lot acquired as it is described in the official sale's record, the catalogue and the bill of purchase.
Starting bid (Mise à prix) The starting bid is usually half of the estimate of the lot.
Absentee bid (Ordre d'achat) If you are unable to attend the sale, an absentee bid may be left with the auctioneer or his staff, indicating the maximum you want to bid. It will be carried out free of charge.
Payment (Paiement) On presentation of the purchase slip, payment will be made in cash or by check. In the latter case, delivery may be held until the check is cashed if no registration has been made with the auctioneer or the expert's office.
Reserve price (Prix de réserve) The seller, in a confidential agreement with the auctioneer, may set a minimum price under which the item will not be sold. Since July 10 2000, it cannot be higher than the low estimate made public.
Voluntary sales companies (Société de ventes volontaires) They result from the free decision of a person to sell all or part of his goods. They must be conducted by private commercial companies (owned by a person, associates or shareholders) that have been approved by the Council of Voluntary Sales and in which at least one of the managers, associates or salaried employees has an auctioneer diploma.
To sell (Vendre) To put a lot up for auction, you need to contact an auctioneer. He will give an estimate. In agreement with the seller, he sets a "reserve" or minimum price after which the seller signs a sale document. The fees charged by SSV’s vary. VAT is also added. Legal fees (7%) are charged in the case of a judicial sale.