Ordinary turns to EXTRAORDINARY! Priceless pearl found in drab earrings
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/5/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
You'll never look at a pearl necklace or pair of earrings gathering dust in a drawer ever again. A British woman had her longtime earrings appraised by her husband - only to have them sold at auction for a world record-breaking Ł811,000.
The earrings were worn on an almost daily basis by the lady who had no idea of their true worth. A gift from her husband, the earrings were made of two large round pearls. Experts later identified one of the gems as a natural pearl.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The earrings were worn on an almost daily basis by the lady who had no idea of their true worth. A gift from her husband, the earrings were made of two large round pearls. Experts later identified one of the gems as a natural pearl.
The other was a more common, cultured pearl that would have been produced by an oyster farmer in controlled conditions and was not that valuable - but the natural pearl had a diameter of 17.4 millimeters and is the largest of its kind to have ever come up for auction.
Experts from Woolley and Wallis Auctioneers of Salisbury, Wilts, gave it a pre-sale estimate of Ł120,000. Competitive bidding drove the auction price up to Ł680,000. With all the fees added on, the overall price paid was Ł811,600. The pearl was sold to renowned international jewelers David Morris of London's Bond Street.
The pearl will now be made into a necklace for a potential buyer in Hong Kong.
"The pearl came in from a private source and was presented as part of a pair of drop earrings," Jonathan Edwards, head of the jewelry department at Woolley and Wallis, said.
"I looked at them and it seemed as though one of them might be a natural pearl, which are worth considerably more than cultured pearls.
"I thought there was a difference between the two because one had an outer layer of about one millimeter thick, but the other seemed to be solid.
"It is very difficult to tell if a pearl is cultured or natural by looking at it and you can never be 100 per cent sure unless you have it X-rayed.
"We had it X-rayed at a London lab and they said it was natural, and we then sent it to a lab in Switzerland who said the same thing," he added.
"The pearl is going to be made into a necklace as part of a collection of pearl jewelry we have been putting together for some time," Phoebe Morris, also from David Morris jewelers, said. "We have a potential buyer for it in Hong Kong.'
It's estimated that the pearl would have taken around 10 years to develop in the wild.
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