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The Most Expensive Sale of Collectibles in History

Throughout history, collectibles have held sentimental value to many, while some people have made it their passion and hobby to collect them. The lovers of these collectibles, from coins to stamps, sports memorabilia to fine art, have spent a massive amount of money and time acquiring them.

As collectors spent their fortune on these collectibles, they’ve helped build a rich history of the world’s most expensive purchases ever happened. Who has ever imagined that a mere comic book worth 10 cents would one day fetch $3.2 million? Yes, that’s right; the Action Comics 1 that brought Superman into the world ranks as the world’s most expensive. So, if you own a rare piece of collectible, get appraisal help from a renowned dealer like Ouslet auction or Alfebauminic, Inc.

World’s Most Expensive Collectibles

Action Comics 1 is just one of the world’s heftily priced collectibles. There are plenty more than we can ever exhaust but we’ll list the most interesting ones that might just inspire and invoke the collector’s zeal in you.

9. The $1,000 Grand Watermelon Banknote

Have you ever seen or heard of a $1,000 note? Yes, there is, and it ranks as the most expensive banknote that ever existed. It was created in the 1890s and dubbed the Grand Watermelon, due to the reverse side’s shape of the three zeros resembling watermelons. The $1,000 note fetched a staggering $3.29 million at an auction in 2014.

8. The “Double Eagle” Coins

The Double Eagle coin is an American gold coin with about 1.0618 Oz of gold content, which was worth $20 in 1849. The coin was a $20 denomination and was the last 1933 gold currency ever made in the US. During a Sotheby’s auction on June 8, 2021, the coin was privately bought for $18.9 million, making it the world’s most expensive coin.

7. Stefani Canturi Barbie

If you thought dolls are sentimental items for kids only and can never be expensive, well, here is a surprise. The Stefani Canturi barbie doll is a vintage toy worth $302, 500, making it the most expensive to ever be auctioned. Although the maker is an Australian, the doll was auctioned at Christie’s in New York and attracted buyers from around the world.

6. Rothschild Faberge Clock Egg

Do you fancy antique pocket watches and clocks and would give anything to own one? Well, a Russian collector who fancies them too bought the Rothschild Fabergé egg clock in 2007 at a whopping $25.1 million. The Fabergé egg is among 15 other pieces that belonged to a Russian Imperial family. This clock egg is not only the world’s most expensive collectible clock. It also ranks as the second highest valuable Fabergé egg after the 3rd Imperial Easter egg valued at $33 million.

5. Song Dynasty Bowl

The Song Dynasty bowl is a 900-year-old tableware believed to have been used for cleaning small brushes. This Chinese antique fetched $37.68 million at a Sotheby’s auction in 2017 in Hong Kong. The surprising bit about the value of this antique bowl is that it needed 20 minutes only to hit its final sale figure.

The auction house described the bowl as extremely unique and sentimental. Its hefty price was also because the porcelain bowl was produced for 2 decades only before discontinuation.

4. 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle Baseball Card

Mickey Mantle’s glory lives on through a 1952 Topps 311 Mantle card, 50 years later after he made history with the New York Yankees. The mantle card is the finest known 1952 Topps Mantle and is the most expensive sports memorabilia. It sold at a Heritage Auction for $12.6 million in 2022.

3. Patek Philippe Henry Graves Supercomplication

Just like its name suggests, this pocket watch is not only the priciest but also the most sophisticated ever made. The Patek Philippe Henry Graves Supercomplication took 8 years to create and was commissioned by an American banker in 1925 after whom it was named. The pocket watch is made from 18k gold featuring 24 complications.

This unique piece was auctioned at Sotheby’s auction house in 2014 for $23.98 million, making it the priciest pocket watch.

2. Hope Diamond

Jewelry forms the most sentimental collectibles, often attached to families for generations. The 17th Hope Diamond jewelry, believed to have come from Kollur Mine in India, is a 45.52-carat diamond with a blue hue due to tiny amounts of boron held in it. This diamond on a pendant has a long history dating back to the era of Jean Baptiste Tavernier, a French merchant, and traveler.

The French ruler, King Louis XIV later bought the diamond from Tavernier in 1668. Ever since the stone has undergone a series of transformations and ownerships and today it’s owned by Smithsonian Institution. Valued at $350 million, Hope Diamond belongs to the United States.

1. Salvator Mundi Painting

Lovers of fine art, here’s the world’s most expensive fine art ever known. The Salvador Mundi is a painting made from eerie oil on a panel, illustrating the image of Jesus Christ. The 26-inch painting of Christ with a garb of the Renaissance era fetched a staggering $450.3 million at Christie’s New York auction house in November 2017.

Wrap Up

It’s no secret that collectibles can fetch a good amount of money, especially if they are attached to a historical significance. While this collection lists a few of the world’s most expensive collectibles, it serves to give you a clear picture of how collectibles can be expensive. If you own a rare collectible in your attic or basement, it’s worth seeking appraisal help from professional appraisers like Ouslet Auction before selling.

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