By Jennifer Conley
Queen Marie Antoinette, the notorious French queen who lost her head during the French Revolution, had a collection of spectacular jewels befitting any queen. During the revolution, most of the French royal jewels were looted but Marie Antoinette was able to send a portion of her jewels to her family in Austria for safe keeping. For over 200 years the collection has been kept in the private collection of Marie Antoinette’s descendants but at the beginning of November 2018, Sotheby’s auction house in Geneva sold many of the famous queen’s prized jewels.
Don’t lose your head over the price, the prized pieces of the deceased French queen sold at auction for 53 million euros (approximately 60 millions US dollars)!!!!!
The highlight of the auction was Marie Antoinette’s stunning pearl and diamond pendant which sold for 28 million euros (approximately 32 millions US dollars)!!!!!
The pendant features a ribbon of 27 diamonds that attaches to the magnificent 15.90 by 18.35 by 25.85 mm pear shaped pearl. This part of the pendant was originally worn on the third row of Marie Antoinette’s three strand pearl necklace with the large oval shaped diamond, that is currently on the top of the pendant, originally in the clasp of the necklace.
Her pearl necklace consisted of 162 natural pearls, including the large natural pear shaped pearl that hung from the pendant.
This enchanting piece was eventually passed down to Marie Antoinette’s daughter, Marie Thérèse of France. Over time the pendant was removed from the necklace and constructed into the magnificent piece that it is today. The pendant is now the most expensive pearl jewel in the world to date, which seems appropriate considering the extravagance of the late French queen, non?