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    The Maharajahs and Mughal Magnificent sale at Christie’s in New York on June 19 promises to be the most valuable jewellery auction ever – eclipsing that of Elizabeth Taylor which totalled $144 million in December of 2011.The mystic east at its most fabulous is revealed in this unprecedented group of jewels, gemstones, and decorative objects from The Al Thani Collection. It consists of almost 400 lots spanning more than 500 years.The Al Thani family rules Qatar and many of the pieces in the sale have been seen at exhibitions of their collection at The Metropolitan Museum in New York and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.  Among many highlights are the Patiala Ruby Choker created by Cartier Paris in 1931 which is considered by many to be the finest ruby necklace ever made and a riviere necklace from the collection of the Nizam of Hyderabad with nearly 200 carats of fine Golconda diamonds.Works from the Al Thani Collection will be shown at a new museum space due to open in central Paris next year.  The museum will provide for the long term display of select pieces drawn from across the entire collection.


    Significant historical pieces are complemented by an important selection from the 20th century by the houses of Bulgari, Cartier, Janesich, Lacloche, Linzeler, Mauboussin, and Mellerio.  The Patiala Ruby Choker was commissioned by Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala, one of the Cartier’s most important Indian clients of the 1920’s and ’30’s.  He often travelled to Paris with trunks of diamonds and gemstones from his treasury for Cartier’s workshops.

    The Arcot II, D Colour, Internally flawless, one of two diamonds presented to Queen Charlotte, wife of George III, by Muhammad Ali Wallajah, Nawab of Arcot.

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