T. Rex Dinosaur Tooth To Be Offered During Bonhams December Natural History Auction

Discovered only weeks ago, in the late summer of 2011 in Garfield County, Mont., is one of the largest T. rex teeth ever found that will be offered by Bonhams at its December 11 Natural History auction. Estimated to bring $25,000–30,000, the magnificent piece has been meticulously prepared.

Thomas Lindgren, Co-Consulting Director of the Natural History Department at Bonhams, said of the specimen: “The tooth is one of the largest individual T. rex teeth to be offered at public auction. It measures 5 1/8 inches (linear measurement), from base to tip. The tooth is more massive than any of the teeth of the well-known T. rex Stan, and is possibly larger than those of Sue, the famous T. rex residing in the Field Museum, Chicago. The newly found T. rex tooth represents the ‘fresh-to-the-market’ approach of the Natural History Department of Bonhams.”

The tooth is from the upper left portion of the mouth of a T. rex. It is the first or second maxillary tooth – the area in the T. rex’s mouth with the largest teeth. The crown is extremely large.

Other highlights of the December sale include one of the largest saber-toothed cat skulls ever offered at auction, a gigantic Machairodus giganteus skull, measuring almost 18 inches; the specimen, estimated at $50,000-60,000, also includes several vertebrae.

The skull of a gigantic Cretaceous fossil fish found in Kansas, a Xiphactinus audax (est. $6,000-8,000) will also be offered. This apex predator, with a skull measuring 30 inches, menaced the intercontinental seaway that divided North America as T. rex and the other huge dinosaurs roamed the landmasses.

On a more aesthetic note, an exquisite fossil palm flower from the famed Green River Formation of Wyoming will be made available. Estimated at $45,000-55,000, it is a spectacular example of the rarely-seen flowers from the palm trees of this 51-million-year-old Eocene geologic formation, reflecting the subtropical climate of an area that is now high desert.

The December 11 sale will also feature a diverse group of high quality and distinctive mineral specimens, gold nuggets, lapidary works of art and gemstones, as well as exceptional examples of fossils, unusual jewelry and “phenomenal gems.” Additional highlights will be announced in the weeks preceding the sale.

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