Tuesday night’s Elizabeth Taylor jewelry auction was one for the ages: it broke seven world records and brought in almost $116 million.
One of the marquee items sold was “La Peregrina,” a Cartier-designed necklace with a 16th-century pearl. After a pre-auction estimate of $2 to $3 million, the necklace eventually sold for $11.8 million, which is the most ever paid for a single-pearl jewel. The auction also broke records for the per-carat prices of a ruby, Indian jewel and colorless diamond.
Two other pieces — a 33.19-carat diamond ring and the Taj Mahal Diamond, both gifts from Richard Burton — sold for $8.8 million each. A diamond and sapphire ring given to Taylor by Michael Jackson sold for $600,000.
Before you bemoan the colossal display of opulence at the Elizabeth Taylor jewelry auction, People reports that “a bulk” of the auction’s proceeds will go straight to the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation.