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  • Posts Tagged ‘Sotheby’s Geneva’


    Tuesday, May 7th, 2024

    The Freedom of the City of Waterford. A Rare Irish gold Freedom Box, William Currie, Dublin, 1752-3. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR CHF 19,050 (€19,435)

    This gold freedom box from an American family collection comes up at Sotheby’s sale of gold boxes and Faberge in Geneva which runs until May 13. It was one of three gold and one silver-gilt freedom boxes given to Lionel Cranfield Sackville, Duke of Dorset, as follows: Waterford, by William Currie, Dublin, circa 1752, (the current box); Kilkenny, also by Currie, Dublin, 1753; Trinity College, Dublin by David King, Dublin,1733, all gold, and in silver-gilt, Wexford, also by Currie, circa 1755.  The arms on the cover are those of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Lionel Cranfield Sackville, 10th Earl and 1st Duke of Dorset, 1687-1765, K.G., P.C., twice Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (1730-37 and 1751-55). The estimate is 15,000-25,000 CHF (€15,350-€25,580).


    Tuesday, April 23rd, 2024

    A c1960 diamond tiara by Chaumet. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 241,300 CHF (€246,035)

    This elegant diamond tiara was formerly in the collection of Anne Gunning Parker, Lady Nutting (1929-1990). It comes up at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels auction in Geneva on May 14. Anne Gunning Parker was a renowned British-Irish fashion model of the 1950’s, born in Southern Rhodesia. In the early 1950’s she became a house model for Irish designer Sybil Connolly and modelled a Connolly ensemble on the cover of Life Magazine in August 1953. She frequently collaborated with photographer Norman Parkinson for Vogue, most notably for a series of fashion photographs shot on location in India.

    In 1961, Anne Gunning married the British diplomat and Member of Parliament Sir Harold Anthony Nutting, third Baronet Tiverton (1920-1999). He had served in the cabinets of Winston Churchill and Anthony Eden. The Nutting family furthermore owned estates in Scotland and England. After retiring from politics he became active as an author and lecturer. This elegant diamond tiara was created by Chaumet in 1960. Lady Nutting had modelled a Chaumet tiara of similar design in a photo by Henry Clarke published in the May 1953 edition of Vogue France which focused on the upcoming coronation of Queen Elizabeth II later that year. It is estimated at $120,000-$180,000 (CHF 110,000-160,000).


    Wednesday, November 1st, 2023
    Exquisite natural pearl and diamond tiara, late 19th century and later. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 393,700 SWISS FRANCS (€408,892)

    This tiara from the collection of Baroness Inchiquin (1868-1940) comes up at Sotheby’s sale of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva on November 8. The descendants of Brian Boru went on to be the Kings of Thomond. In 1543, Murrough O’Brien, the last King of Thomond, submitted his realm to Henry VIII. In order to do so, he had to renounce his ancient Irish titles, instead he was granted the titles Marquis of Thomond, and Baron Inchiquin. Their ancestral seat is Dromoland Castle in Co. Clare.

    Lucius O’Brien, The 15th Baron, Lord Inchiquin (1864–1929), Prince of Thomond and chief of the name was born in England and started his military career in Royal Irish Riffles. Upon succeeding to the title of Lord Inchiquin, 15th Baron, he served as an Irish representative in the House of Lords. His spouse, Lady Inchiquin, née Ethel Jane Foster attended the coronation of King George V in 1911 wearing the natural pearl and diamond tiara. Estimated at 170,000-180,000 Swiss francs (€176,980-€187,390) it is one of three jewels in the sale which belonged to the late Lady Inchiquin. Her diamond brooch is estimated at 6,000-8,000 Swiss francs (€6,250-€8,330) and a c1900 devant de corsage is estimated at 24,000-35,000 Swiss francs (€24,990-€36,440).

    Diamond devant-de-corsage, circa 1900. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 76,200 SWISS FRANCS (€79.140)


    Monday, November 9th, 2020

    AN exceptionally rare 14.83 carat Fancy Vivid Purple-Pink, Internally Flawless, Type IIa diamond comes up at Sotheby’s in Geneva on November 11. Named ‘The Spirit of the Rose’ after Vaslav Nijinsky’s legendary ballet, Le Spectre de la rose, the diamond was mined, cut and polished in Russia. It is the largest Purple-Pink diamond to ever appear at auction. It was cut from the largest pink crystal ever mined in Russia. It is estimated at CHF 21-35 million or $23-38 million US. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR $26.6 MILLION


    Wednesday, November 14th, 2018

    The magic of Queen Marie-Antoinette held say at Sotheby’s in Geneva when a pearl and diamond pendant that belonged to ill-fated French Queen was been sold for $36 million over an estimate of around $2 million.  This is a world record for a pearl.  The pendant was part of a collection of jewellery sold by Italy’s Bourbon-Parma house.

    Other lots included a natural pearl and diamond necklace, a pair of pearl and diamond earrings, and a monogram ring with a lock of her hair.  The queen smuggled her jewellery to her family in Austria before an ill fated attempt to flee the French Revolution.  She was guillotined aged 37  in 1793.

    The previous record for the most expensive pearl was a necklace once owned by Elizabeth Taylor which was sold for $11.8 million at Christie’s in 2011.


    Monday, April 10th, 2017

    The most valuable earrings at auction, ever.

    THE most valuable earrings ever to appear at auction comes up at Sotheby’s in Geneva on May 16.  The Apollo and Artemis diamonds, one Fancy Vivid Blue, one Fancy Intense Pink, are to be offered separately as individual lots.  The Apollo Blue, internally flawless and 14.54 carats, is estimated at US$38-50 million, the 16 carat VVS 2 clarity Artemis Pink at US$12.5-18 million. The Apollo Blue is the largest internally flawless fancy vivid blue diamond ever offered at auction.

    David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, said: “’The Apollo and Artemis Diamonds’ will be the stars of our May sale in Geneva – by far the most important pair of earrings ever offered at auction. These exquisite coloured diamonds are enormously rare and each is a wonderful stone in its own right. Together, as a pair of earrings, they are breathtaking. We have named them after Apollo and Artemis, a twin brother and sister of great power and beauty who were among the most widely venerated of the Ancient Greek deities. These are diamonds of great distinction, with extraordinary presence, and we are honoured that Sotheby’s has been chosen to bring them to auction in May.”

    UPDATE:  They sold for a combined world record total of $57 million. They were renamed The Memory of Autumn Leaves ($42 million) and The Dream of Autumn Leaves ($15 million).  The auction realised $151.5 million.


    Monday, October 17th, 2016

    The 8.01 Sky Blue Diamond

    The 8.01 Sky Blue Diamond:  UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR  $17.1 MILLION.

    A rare Fancy Vivid Blue diamond ring by Cartier will be the centrepiece at Sotheby’s November auction of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva on November 16.    Weighing 8.01 carats, this mesmerising stone has been named ‘The Sky Blue Diamond’, emphasising its highly sought-after hue. The estimate is US$15 – 25 million.

    David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, said: “The Sky Blue Diamond is of a wonderfully clear celestial blue, presented in an extremely elegant square emerald cut – in my view, the most flattering of all the cuts for a coloured diamond. This important gem will, I am sure, captivate all collectors of exceptional gemstones.”

    Fancy Vivid Blue is the highest possible colour grading. It is awarded to no more than 1% of blue diamonds submitted to the Gemological Institute of America. Sotheby’s has twice set a new world record auction price for a blue diamond within the past two years most recently with the only diamond or gemstone in auction history to have exceeded $4 million per carat, the Blue Moon of Josephine.  This sold for $48.5 million ($4,028,941 per carat) in November 2015.


    Thursday, November 12th, 2015

    The 12.03 carat internally flawless fancy vivid blue diamond The Blue Moon of Josephine.

    The 12.03 carat internally flawless fancy vivid blue diamond The Blue Moon of Josephine.

    A Hong Kong private buyer set a new auction record for any diamond when he paid US$48.5 million at Sotheby’s in Geneva last night for a 12.03 carat blue diamond. It was promptly named “The Blue Moon of Josephine”.  This was a record for any diamond of any colour, or any gemstone. The price per carat for this internally flawless stone works out at US$4,028,941.  This is the first time any gemstone has reached over $4 million per carat. The sale last night of magnificent jewels and noble jewels brought in US$139,085,346.

    David Bennet, Sotheby’s chairman of jewellery said: “I am absolutely delighted with this evening’s record result – this show-stopping blue diamond surely is a once-in-a-lifetime stone. I’m also pleased to say that tonight’s sale takes our total in Geneva for this year to an unprecedented 300 million dollars, following our record-breaking sale in May. The star of the evening, the ‘Blue Moon of Josephine’ was discovered at the Cullinan Mine, which is owned by Petra Diamonds, and was polished to perfection by Cora International. It now takes its place among the world’s greatest diamonds.”

    The previous auction record for any diamond was held by The Graff Pink (24.78 carats), which sold for US$46.2 million at Sotheby’s Geneva in 2010.


    Thursday, September 17th, 2015



    The Blue Moon Diamond – among the largest fancy vivid blue diamonds known – will be the centrepiece at Sotheby’s auction of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva on November 11.  It weighs 12.03 carats and has been graded Fancy Vivid Blue – the highest possible colour grading for blue diamonds — by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). Internally flawless it comes to market with an estimate of $35-55 million.

    David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, commented: “The tremendous excitement last year over the discovery of a 29.62-carat blue rough diamond at the Cullinan mine in South Africa has now been proved to have been totally justified. Weighing in at 12.03 carats, the ‘Blue Moon’ diamond is a simply sensational stone of perfect colour and purity, combined with a superb cushion shape. Blue, for me, is the most mysterious and magical of all the colours of diamond, and the Blue Moon will now take its place among the most famous gems in the world.”