Elizabeth Taylor Jewelry Auction Set for December



The 33-carat D-flawless Krupp Diamond, a pearl that once belonged to the Spanish crown, and three diamond rings won in a game of ping pong, will be among the highlights of Christie’s auction of Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry in December.

The auction house said in a Sept. 7 statement that the sales will showcase “the greatest private collection of jewelry ever assembled in one place.”

The first part of the two-day sale, involving 80 of Taylor’s jewels, will take place at Christie’s New York on the evening of Dec. 13. The auction house will sell 189 additional jewels on Dec. 14.

The total selection of 269 jewels is estimated to achieve well in excess of $30 million, Christie’s said.

“Elizabeth Taylor’s passion for jewelry was well-known, but it is her depth of knowledge about fine jewelry that truly impresses,” François Curiel, international jewelry director and president of Christie’s Asia, said in a statement. “From the first time I met her in 1998, it was clear that she possessed an expert’s eye for craftsmanship, rarity, quality and history… I hope that the next owner of each of these iconic pieces will enjoy and respect these jewels just as much as she did, and as she herself said, ‘Give them a really good home.’”

Among the jewels to be auctioned:

The Elizabeth Taylor Diamond 

– 33.19 carats, D-color, potentially internally flawless

– Gift from husband Richard Burton, May 16, 1968

– Estimate: $2.5 million to $3.5 million

– This was the ring that Taylor wore every day. It was purchased at auction for $300,000 in 1968 as the Krupp Diamond

La Pérégrina – The Legendary Pearl

– Features an early 16th century 203-grain pearl, once part of the crown jewels of Spain

– Now part of a Cartier-designed necklace with matched pearl and rubies

– The pearl was a gift from Burton, Jan. 23, 1969

– Estimate: $2 million to $3 million

The Ping Pong Diamond Rings

– A group of three diamond rings

– Gift from Burton, 1970

–  Estimate: $5,000 to $7,000

– Burton promised Taylor a diamond if she could score ten points against him in ping pong. She did, and he promptly set off to find the smallest possible diamond for her. He ended up with these three rings.

The BVLGARI Emerald Suite

– A suite of emerald and diamond jewelry by BVLGARI

– Gifts from Richard Burton, from 1962 to 1967

– Necklace estimate: $1 million to $1.5 million

– Pendant estimate: $500,000 to $700,000

– Ring estimate: $600,000 to $800,000

– Bracelet estimate: $300,000 to $500,000

– Earrings estimate: $150,000 to $200,000

The Cartier Ruby Suite

– A suite of ruby and diamond jewelry by Cartier

– Gift from Mike Todd, August 1957

– Necklace estimate: $200,000 to $300,000

– Bracelet estimate: $150,000 to $200,000

– Earrings estimate: $80,000 to $120,000

Prior to the sales, highlights of the collection will tour the world. Here are the dates of the exhibits:

  • Sept. 15 and 16, Moscow, GUM
  • Sept. 24, 25 and 26, London, Christie’s London
  • Oct. 13, 14, 15 and 16, Los Angeles, MOCA Pacific Design Center
  • Oct. 23, Dubai, Emirates Tower Hotel
  • Nov. 11 and 12, Geneva, Four Seasons Hotel de Bergues
  • Nov. 16 and 17, Paris, Christie’s Paris
  • Nov. 24, 25, 26, and 27, Hong Kong, Hong Kong Convention Center
  • Dec. 3 through 12, New York City, Christie’s New York

Tickets will be required to view the exhibitions in London, Los Angeles, and New York City, but are not required for Moscow, Dubai, Geneva, Paris, and Hong Kong.

Ticket availability will be announced via christies.com in advance of the exhibitions.

A portion of the profits generated by admissions, events, and select publications related to the sales will be donated to The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation.

Taylor died in March. The auction house announced its plans to auction her jewelry a month later.

View more information, or order a catalog.