$700,000 Austrian Emperor's Chimney Piece Heads Sotheby's Sale
Looking for a unique item to add a regal flourish to your interior decor? An extremely rare, important and well-preserved neo-Gothic terracotta chimney piece commissioned for Franz Joseph I, Emperor of Austria, King of Bohemia and King of Hungary, in the late 19th century, is being offered for sale during Sotheby's' Origines, Architecture & Heritage, Decoration and Garden Statuary auction in Paris on March 31. The incredible 8.5-ft. tall piece, built to surround a kingly fireplace at one of the imperial Hapsburg family palaces and bearing the emperor's coat of arms, is expected to fetch up to $700,000. Two knights standing on Corinthian columns flank the mantelpiece, which also bears the Emperor's motto Viribus Unitis, "With united forces."