Exquisite Historic Royal Memorabilia to be Auctioned by Heritage

Dallas, TX – An important collection of royal artifacts, spanning several centuries and several continents, comes to auction on April 24, when Dallas-based Heritage Auction Galleries offers the James C. Russo Russian and British Royal Objects Collection.

“This incredible collection, which includes over 300 items of vertu, jewelry, medallic art, and porcelains, has been assembled over the past twenty years by James Russo, a collector with a passion for both beauty and history,” said Kathleen Guzman, Consignment Director for Heritage. “The pieces offered here, most of which are personal pieces from a specific member of a Royal family or reigning monarch, were acquired by Mr. Russo not only for their intrinsic beauty, but for the unique story that each piece holds.”

“For example,” Guzman continued, “one of the premiere pieces in this collection is an Imperial Faberge heart-shaped sterling silver clock, created by workmaster Ivan Rappaport in 1891 for Tsar Alexander III to present to his wife Maria Fedorovna on the occasion of the 25th Silver Wedding Anniversary. It is engraved with the names of the Tsar’s Imperial Residences, the nickname of the Empress, ‘Minni,’ and the initials of their five children. The silver strut that supports the clock in the back forms the Tsar’s initial, A, and the piece retains its original key and box. In every way, this is an exceptional, one-of-a-kind treasure that affords a glimpse into the private life of an important historical figure.”

“From France, the collection includes a Napoleon III gold and diamond snuffbox, retailed by Froment-Meurice of Paris, which the Emperor presented to Lady Keith Nancy in 1855,” Guzman said. “This lovely box, in which a rose and old mine diamond cut crown with the Emperor’s initial are set on a royal blue enamel cartouche, includes the original monogrammed presentation box.”

“Also included, and of particular interest, are several exceptional Princess Diana items,” Guzman said, “including a magnum of vintage 1961 Dom Perignon champagne saved from the wedding breakfast of Diana and Charles held on July 29, 1981, as well as a collection of three letters from Diana and her sons, William and Harry, dated October 24, 1990, thanking the Inspector of Police at Kensington Palace for arranging their trip to an amusement park. It’s items like these that really point to the humanity of the royal figures represented in the collection.”

Guzman continued, “Other important pieces in the auction include the traveling Birmingham silver tea set in case, which was presented by Queen Victoria to Dr. James Reid, her physician, on Christmas, 1888; a rare Russian Empress Alexandra Imperial porcelain Easter Egg with box; an important Tsar Alexander I diamond and enamel Imperial presentation bracelet with box; and a King George V portrait miniature mounted as a diamond brooch.”

All proceeds from the auction of the Princess Diana lots will benefit the Russo-Cointreau Foundation, a not for profit educational and healthcare foundation for families in need.

Heritage Auction Galleries will offer the James C. Russo Russian & British Royal Objects Collection in their upcoming Fine Art Signature auction, to be held on April 24, 2008, at their Slocum Street facility in Dallas, TX.

Rare Imperial Russian Fabergé Alexander III twenty-fifth Wedding Anniversary Presentation Desk Clock: Estimate: $300,000 – $500,000
French Emperor Napoleon III Gold and Diamond Presentation Snuffbox: Estimate: $6,000 – $8,000
Magnum of Vintage 1961 Champagne Cuvée Dom Perignon for the Wedding of Charles, Prince of Wales and Lady Diana Spencer: Estimate: $20,000 – $30,000
Three Letters Written by Princess Diana, Prince William and Prince Henry to Ken Wharfe, Inspector of Police at Kensington Palace: Estimate: $7,000 – $9,000
English Victorian Silver Royal Presentation Bachelor’s Tea-Service: Estimate: $2,000 – $3,000
Rare Russian Empress Alexandra Imperial Porcelain Easter Egg: Estimate: $20,000 – $30,000
Important Tsar Alexander I Diamond and Enamel Imperial Presentation Bracelet: Estimate: $100,000 – $150,000
King George V Portrait Miniature Mounted as a Diamond Brooch: Estimate: $8,000 – $12,000
For more information about Heritage’s auctions, and a complete record of prices realized, along with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit www.HA.com.

Prospective consignors and sellers of Fine and Decorative arts are invited to www.HA.com and click on the “Sell Now” tab. Or simply email Kathleen Guzman at [email protected]

To reserve your copy of any Heritage auction catalog, please contact Client Services at 1-800-872-6467, ext. 1150, or visit www.HA.com/Catalog to order by email.

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