Art Deco and Belle Époque designs lead Bonhams Fine Jewellery sale in September

Fine Jewellery
19 Sep 2012
London, New Bond Street

A magnificent selection of jewellery including top quality diamonds, Burmese rubies and natural pearls will be offered in Bonhams Fine Jewellery sale on 19th September in New Bond Street, London.

Stunning examples of art deco and belle époque designs are among some of the highlights in the sale, with exquisite early pieces by Cartier and Tiffany & Co. A seed pearl, sapphire and diamond 'sautoir' necklace by Cartier is one of the rarest pieces in the sale, estimated at £50,000 - 70,000. The necklace is formed of two parts, made in different years, the tassel pendent made in 1910, during the belle époque and the seed pearl necklace made in 1917. Cartier often made pieces that were closely similar but not identical, and a nearly identical pendant was included in the Cartier Exhibition at the British Museum exhibition in 1997. This necklace was purchased from Cartier by the vendor's father and has never been seen on the open market before.

Natural pearls are well represented in the sale including a fabulous natural pearl and diamond lavallière necklace, circa 1910 estimated at £60,000 - 80,000. Not only are the two pearl drops of large size, they are also beautifully matched.

Jewellery by Tiffany & Co offer some of the most eye-catching art deco designs in the sale. A ruby line bracelet by Tiffany & Co, from circa 1930 is estimated at £8,000 - 10,000 and is designed with the finest step-cut Burmese rubies. Another exquisite Burmese ruby weighing 3.17 carats features in a ruby and diamond ring, by Tiffany & Co, from circa 1925, estimated at £12,000 - 18,000.

The sale also includes a magnificent diamond single-stone ring, by Cartier. The step-cut diamond, weighing 6.44 carats, is of D colour and IF clarity and is of Type IIa and is estimated at £250,000 - 350,000.

Jean Ghika, Director of the Jewellery Department for the UK and Europe said "Early 20th century period pieces by famous jewellers such as Cartier and Tiffany are exquisitely made and greatly sought-after. It is a great pleasure to be offering so many of these beautiful items of superb quality. There is a truly eclectic range of high quality jewels in this sale including Burmese rubies, natural pearls and an extremely rare collection of engraved gemstones from the nineteenth century."

The sale also includes a rare collection of 27 intaglios, engraved gemstones, from the collection of Prince Stanislas Poniatowski, nephew of the last King of Poland. The Prince, who died in 1833, was a passionate collector of antiquities and during his lifetime commissioned an extraordinary series of over 2500 engraved gems. He encouraged the belief that the gems were ancient when in fact he had commissioned them from contemporary gem engravers. When the collection was exposed after his death as 'modern' it was dispersed and discredited. It is only now that the gems are recognised for their rarity and the superior craftsmanship of the neo-classical engraving. The collection is estimated to fetch £20,000 - 30,000.


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to

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