Late-19th-Century French Crystal Chandelier
It's a crystal chandelier that I inherited from my mother, who inherited it from my aunt, who was married to a congressman. And it was reported to me by my mother that this was installed in the first Russian embassy in Washington, D.C., that was converted into a residence. They took a bunch of the stuff out and they took and auctioned it.
Well, your mother and your aunt had really good taste. It's made in France, probably in the 1800s, I would say the latter part of the 1800s. And it was made by one of the major manufacturers in France, like Baccarat. It's not signed, so I can't say for sure who made it, but the style and quality of this example is typically French. What I like about this chandelier is the exquisite prisms and how wonderful it reflects the light. Chandeliers at this point, with 18 lights, was made for a salon, a dining room or something very special, so an embassy would fit. It is electrified. That's actually going to make it a little bit easier to sell in today's market.
Yay! So your aunt purchased this at auction.
Do you have any idea how much she paid for it?
No. After she passed away, they said it was worth about $5,000.
At auction, similar chandeliers have sold for $8,000 to $12,000.
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Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
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