Archive for Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Royal auction a blockbuster

June 14, 2006

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— Bidders clamored Tuesday for jewelry owned by the late Princess Margaret - including the tiara she wore at her wedding - during an auction that surpassed the predicted total with the sale only half over.

Christie's said the collection of jewels drew $17.3 million in the first day of the two-day sale. The auction house had originally estimated that the auction would bring in about $15 million.

Margaret, the younger sister of Queen Elizabeth II, died of a stroke in 2002 at the age of 71. She was known for her glamour and sense of style.

One of the most-watched items was the tiara, shown at right, that Margaret wore at her 1960 wedding to Lord Snowdon. Originally designed in 1870 for Lady Poltimare, it fetched $1.7 million, far more than its $360,000 pre-sale estimate.

The auction, which included 192 pieces of jewelry Tuesday, today will offer 600 items of furniture, china, monogrammed silver boxes and decorative items.

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