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Sale at Drouot features 130 meteorites
Experimental glove for Russian space program to planet Mars. Dimensions: 12 x 32 x 12 cm. Estimate: €3,500 – 4,000 © Lucien-Paris / Drouot.

PARIS.- Drouot shared a fantastic auction that will be offered on 21 October, commemorating the 50th anniversary of Man’s first steps on the Moon. Titled “Space to Paris” this sale is presented by Lucien Paris auction house.

Among a selection of 130 meteorites, a fragment weighting 364 kg from the famous Mont-Dieu meteorite will be featured. This specific meteorite was found in the Ardennes (North-East of France), in the smallest village of the region where only 17 people live. In 2010, a professional gold-panner named Mr. Billard got the authorisation to research the area. With the help of a metal detector, Billard discovered the gigantic fragment, buried 70 cm. deep in the soil. The original weight of the entire meteorite is estimated around 1 ton.

Though Billard technically discovered the fragment, its existence was known since 1994. The situation generated legal proceedings to establish who the rightful owner of the rock was, Mr. Billard or French state. Eventually, three years later, Jean-Luc Billard won the trial.

The original weight of the entire meteorite is estimated around 1 ton and therefore constitutes the second most important ever found in Europe. It is estimated that this fragment would have fallen on Earth at the end of the 19th century or at the beginning of the 20th. Estimate: €80,000-120,000.

Jean-Luc Billard will personally attend the sale and will be able to tell the story of his extraordinary discovery in person.

Another highlight of the sale is a piece of the Moon discovered in 1968 and authenticated in 2018. Weighting 157 kg, this piece is from a larger meteorite that fell in the village of Saint-Aubin (South-East of Paris) that is estimated to have weighted 7 tons. (Estimate: €30,000-50,000)

Scientific instruments, equipment, photographs of Apollo’s missions and celestial globes will complete the auction, along with artworks from different collections. The sale will take place on October 21st at Drouot after a two-day exhibition on 19 and 20 October.

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