Originally published 03/25/2013
The engagement ring the young Napoleon "must have broken his wallet" to buy for his fiancee Josephine shattered expectations today at the Osenat auction house in France when it sold for close to $1 million, Osenat's expert Jean-Christophe Chataignier said.The winning bidder, who wanted to stay completely anonymous, paid $949,000, almost 50 times the $20,000 Osenat had expected to bring in. Including the buyer's 25 percent commission to Osenat, the total price for the ring was $1.17 million."In my wildest dreams, I did not think we would outsell the estimate by more than 47 times," said Osenat's Emily Villane, who led today's auction. "We based the estimates in our catalog on the actual market value of the ring, minus Napoleon and Josephine provenance. It is not our job to tell bidders how much they should pay for the historical premium."...