The tradition of the Easter egg can be traced back to the early Christians of Mesopotamia and today the exchange of chocolate eggs has become a massive part of the Easter celebrations. This holiday weekend, we take a look at three very different eggs that feature in upcoming auctions, ranging from an extraordinary elephant egg to a beautiful Fabergé creation.
A GERMAN LARGE SILVER FIGURE OF AN OSTRICH, PROBABLY KARL KURZ, KESSELSTADT, CIRCA 1900. ESTIMATE: €4,500–6,500.
1. A German Large Silver Figure Of An Ostrich.
The body of this impressive bird, which features in the Importante Orfèvrerie Européenne, Boîtes En Or Et Objets De Vitrine in Paris on 12 April, is formed of an ostrich egg. The creation is completed with silver legs, neck, tail, head and a set of hinged wings.
A FINE AND RARE ELEPHANT BIRD EGG, 17TH CENTURY OR EARLIER. ESTIMATE: HK$350,000–550,000.
2. A Fine And Rare Elephant Bird Egg.
The egg of the elephant bird, an example of which features in the Curiosity IV sale in Hong Kong on 2 April, is believed to be the largest egg, outcompeting any known dinosaur eggs. The present egg is one of a few which remain in private hands. It was formerly in the collection of Lord Alistair McAlpine, an English peer celebrated for his interest in the curios.
A FABERGÉ JEWELLED GOLD EGG PENDANT, WORKMASTER AUGUST HOLLMING, ST PETERSBURG, 1899-1904. ESTIMATE: £3,000-5,000. IMAGE BY OLIVIA HOWITT.
3. A Fabergé Jewelled Gold Egg Pendant. Estimate: £3,000-5,000.
One of the most charming Russian Easter traditions was the collecting of egg pendant necklaces and a selection of these feature in the Russian Works of Art, Fabergé & Icons sale in London on 5 June. From her first birthday, a girl would be given a small egg pendant every year before Easter, to be placed on a small chain, a precursor of the present day charm bracelet.