GENEVA (AP) — Marie de Medici wore it at her coronation as Queen Consort of Henry IV in France in 1610, and now the Beau Sancy diamond is a lavish accessory owned by an anonymous bidder who paid $9.7 million for it at Sotheby's auction.
The spring auction season for jewelry and watches is upon Geneva, where elegant lakefront hotels fill with well-heeled buyers and bidders in a scene far removed from the debate over European austerity.
Five bidders fueled the price on Tuesday at the Sotheby's sale for the Beau Sancy, a 34.98 carat diamond that had passed among the royal families in France, England, Prussia and the Netherlands. It was sold by the Royal House of Prussia, the line of descendants that once ruled Prussia.
Another historical item, the Murat Tiara, sold for $3.87 million. The pearl-and-diamond tiara was created for the marriage of a prince whose ancestors included the husband of Caroline Bonaparte, Napoleon's sister.
A diamond brooch known as the "Bonnie Prince Charlie" sold for $968,085. The brooch features a yellow diamond once owned by Charles Edward Stuart, whose attempt to regain the British crown led to the Battle of Culloden in 1745.