Dating from the late 19th to early 20th Century, the cushion-shaped sapphire was formerly owned by a European noble family. It was the first time it had appeared at auction, attracting interest from multiple bidders, before it eventually sold to a telephone buyer, far exceeding its pre-sale estimate of £300,000-400,000.
Emily Barber, director of Jewellery at Bonhams UK, said: “We have a strong track record of selling Kashmir sapphires at Bonhams, with our international clients eager to add an important gem to their growing collections. We’re delighted that this impressive stone performed so well at the sale.”
The second highest performing lot was A Diamond and Sapphire Transformable Necklace by Spanish jeweller Grassy. Dated circa 1935 and featuring a 34.59 carat Sri Lankan (no heat) sapphire, the necklace sold for £287,562 against its pre-sale estimate of £120,000-180,000.