Would You Shell Out $70,000 for This Massive Egg?


The extinct elephant bird grew up to 3 meters in height and weighed 450 kg
Photo: Sotheby’s

Easter has come and gone yet Sotheby’s is selling what it’s calling the “the world’s most valuable egg” at the auction house’s Travel, Atlases, Maps & Natural History auction on April 30 in London.

Egg aficionados will have to shell out between £30,000 and £50,000 ($45,717 and $76,000) to take home the incredibly rare 31cm x 24cm elephant bird egg. (See Christie’s Fabergé Egg Thief to Be Sentenced Just Days After Easter.)

Indigenous to the island of Madagascar, the elephant bird typically grew to about three meters and weighed in at an impressive 450kg. Biologists consider it to be the largest ever oviparous animal to walk the earth. (See Fabergé Turns New York into a Hunting Ground for Artist-Designed Easter Eggs.)

Following its extinction in the early 17th century due to hunting and the destruction of its natural habitat as a result of deforestation caused by European settlers, the elephant bird’s giant eggs have become an increasingly sought after rarity by collectors. Completely undamaged and fully intact eggs typically fetch top prices at auction.

The lot which is being offered at Sotheby’s has been described as being “generally in very good condition.” It boasts the provenance of having belonged to the Swiss carriage manufacturer and natural artifacts collector Otto Alfred Heimburger.

Anybody who likes to try before they buy can take a look at the egg at Sotheby’s Bond Street Galleries in London from April 25-29.

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