Russian Imperial Accessories Stun at Auction

Snuff boxes and cuff links once belonging to the Russian royal family far exceeded pre-auction estimates at Sotheby’s on November 30, with cigarette cases proving to be the accessory of choice for those seeking to capture a piece of Russian royal history. A bejeweled Fabergé cigarette case sold for nearly 12 times the amount estimated, yielding more than $1 million. The piece belonged to Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna, sister-in-law of Emperor Alexander III. Another set of cigarette cases brought in a nearly equal amount. The auction settled at $11.6 million, more than seven times what experts anticipated.