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Report: Elizabeth Taylor's jewels are expected to be auctioned

March 29, 2011 |  3:00 pm

Taylor is wearing diamond jewelry given to her by former husband Eddie Fisher Elizabeth Taylor's personal jewels, once estimated at $150 million collectively, are expected to be auctioned by Christie's to benefit the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation and amfAR, the AIDS charity she co-founded in 1985, according to a report.

The actress, who died last week of congestive heart failure at age 79, famously collected gems and jewelry. She was often gifted gorgeous, sigh-inducing pieces like her 33-carat Krupp diamond -- given to her by her fifth husband, Richard Burton -- which she is said to have cherished most.

Among her collection was a 29-carat diamond ring from third husband Michael Todd, a 50-carat pear-shaped La Peregrina Pearl and a 69-carat Taylor-Burton diamond purchased for $1 million.

You may clutch your own pearls now.

"The studios, in order to make her happy, they'd always give her jewelry. So she grew up collecting it," celebrity jeweler Lorraine Schwartz, who was also a friend of Taylor's, told People.

Taylor even penned a book called "My Love Affair With Jewelry" in which she showcased her finest gems. That's why Candy Spelling, a jewel collector herself, is said to be gearing up for the first bid on Taylor's jewels. And it seems as if everyone knows Taylor held diamonds in the highest regard.

"She had the most amazing eye," Peter Sedghi, the Luxury Jewels of Beverly Hills president/CEO who worked with the actress on her House of Taylor jewelry line, told the magazine.  "To be honest, she knew more than I did [about jewelry]. When you would show her stones, she would tell you the origin, if it's good quality, bad quality, where it came from."

The actress' net worth is estimated between $600 million and $1 billion, thanks to business deals and her successful fragrances -- White Diamonds, Black Pearls and Passion. The fragrances alone have yielded more than $1 billion in sales since the introduction of White Diamonds in 1991.

Elizabeth Arden, the company that manufactures the fragrances, announced that it will continue to sell them. So if you want to get a piece of Taylor's legacy, the fragrances could be the next best option.


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-- Nardine Saad

Photo: British-born actoress Elizabeth Taylor watches her fiance Eddie Fisher as he performs on stage at the Tropicana in Las Vegas in August 1959. Taylor is wearing diamond jewelry given to her by Fisher. Credit: John Bryson / Time & Life Pictures / Getty Images