Mysterious lost brooch and ring out-sold pre-sale guides by £36,000.
Two pieces that belonged to mystery writer Agatha Christie have smashed their pre-sale estimates at Bonhams auction house by £36,375, after a flurry of excitement from bidders.
The auction, which took place yesterday (October 8), saw Christie’s diamond brooch beat its pre-sale estimate of £6,000 to £8,000 by a staggering £19,500, selling for £27,500 (including buyer’s premium).
The second piece, Christie’s three-stone diamond ring, was estimated at £3,000 to £5,000 and sold for £21,875 (including buyer’s premium).
Using the upper pre-sale value as a guide, both of Christie’s diamond pieces exceeded their estimates by £36,375.
The two pieces were long thought to be lost, having been mentioned as family heirlooms by Christie in her autobiography, but their whereabouts were unknown.
Eight years ago, a die-hard fan took part in the 2006 house contents sale of Christie’s childhood home, the Greenway estate, only to discover the jewellery at the bottom of a locked travelling trunk purchased for £100.
Bonhams head of jewellery Carole Gordon commented: “We are very pleased to have been able to offer these two fine pieces, coming as they do not only with an illustrious provenance but with such a wonderful story of discovery by the vendor. The astonishing prices achieved today are just the icing on the cake”.