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Tsar-Quality Cigarette Case A Hot Item

posted 3 Jun 2013, 16:57 by Mpelembe   [ updated 3 Jun 2013, 16:58 ]

LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM / SAINT PETERSBURG + YEKATERINBURG, RUSSIA (REUTERS) -  A cigarette case many would like to get their hands on.

And one lucky buyer soon will - it's being auctioned on June 5th by Bonhams inLondon.

The Faberge piece belonged to Russia's last tsar, Nicholas II.

Director of Bonham's Russian Department, Sophie Law, says that what makes it especially valuable is that it was a gift from Nicholas' wife Tsarina Alexandra after the birth of their second daughter, Tatiana.

 Sophie Law, Director, Bonhams Russian Department, 

"It notes a very important event in their lives, an intimate event, the birth of a daughter and that is kind of entombed in the cigarette case not least because we know what happened to them later when they were killed at the beginning of the Russian revolution."

Decorated with purple enamel, gold plating and precious stones, it's expected to sell for at least 200,000 British pounds, that's more than 300,000 U.S. dollars.

So even if the future owner smokes cheap cigarettes, they'll be encased in Russian riches.