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Freddie Mercury’s first draft of Queen’s bohemian rhapsody It sold for more than 1.5 million euros at auction in London. The crown and royal gown worn by the singer at the end of the band’s final tour shows were sold for just under €750,000 at a Mercury estate auction.
The fifteen leaves of the calendar contain written text and a melody from bohemian rhapsody Providing a fresh look at how the British band achieved their biggest success. This is how Mercury initially chose the title Mongolian Rhapsody The opening line was considered “Mama, there’s a war starting”, rather than “Mama, I just killed a man”. On another piece of paper, he wrote down famous phrases to use, from the famous “Galileo” and “Scaramouche” to words like “Belladonna” and “Matador.”
In addition to this composition, the original lyrics of other big hits were also on sale, e.g Someone to love, We are the champions And do not stop me now. All of them were sold for amounts ranging from 2.8 to 3.75 tons.
The snake bracelet that Mercury wore in his music video bohemian rhapsody It raised a record amount of more than 800 thousand euros. This easily surpassed John Lennon’s leather charm, which sold for €340,000 in 2008 and has since become the most expensive rock gem ever to come to auction. The Mercury piano was the item that raised the most at the auction at €2 million.
All 1,400 lots from the multi-day auction at famed Sotheby’s come from Mercury’s London home, the Garden Lodge. After his death in 1991, he left it to his former lover, Mary Austin. She now believes it is time to say goodbye, although she describes, “It is a difficult decision to close this special chapter in my life.”
“It has been my pleasure and privilege to be surrounded all these years by all the wonderful things Freddie has collected,” she said in a press release. “This is an opportunity to share the many facets of Freddie’s life, both private and public, so that the world can better understand and remember his unique and amazing personality.” She describes the auction as the best way to do that, “because there was nothing Freddie loved more.”
In addition to plenty of Queen material, from the song’s lyrics and Mercury logo design to a room full of gold records, many of the singer’s personal items were presented. His flamboyant theatrical persona is subtly reflected in the baroque elegance of a Fabergé clock from his bedroom, the extravagance of a Lalique or a silver mustache comb from Tiffany.
In addition, the artworks with which Mercury filled his home were for sale, from the Picasso painting hanging in the kitchen to the Chagall painting on the mantelpiece. The famous Garden Lodge door, on which fans wrote en masse letters after his death, was also sold by the hammer, as was a jukebox filled with rock and roll classics by Little Richard and Bill Haley.
With a selling price of 480,000 euros, the door achieved many times the value estimated by Sotheby’s at about 30,000 euros. The auction house had estimated the value of the music box at the same value, but it turned out to be worth much more and was sold for less than half a million euros.
Most items fetched much more than their estimated value. Even the garnet ring that Elton John once gave to Mercury was turned upside down 55 times.
Mercury clothing was also popular. From the tight suits he wore in his early years to the cat sweater featured in his most recent videos, These are the days of our lives He kept his clothes. Enthusiasts will easily recognize the salmon pink suit The great pretenderHe. She Radio ja jaA bomber jacket or outfit aka a shrimp It’s a hard life.
Sotheby’s put everything on display for four weeks to fans, who regularly waited in long lines out the door. The auction house offers them special offers under the slogan: Crazy little things It also features trinkets from the singer that would normally not be listed in the catalogue.
The fact that the singer remains popular is clear from the prices here: for a simple cat figurine or Japanese porcelain that the auction house valued at a few tens of euros, bids worth twenty times that have already been received.
Six auctions will be held until next Wednesday to sell everything, and tonight the top pieces were the first pieces to be sold at public auction. In total, this opening evening, in which all 59 pieces were sold, raised more than 14 million euros. The attendees, dressed in evening clothes, concluded the meeting with rhythmic applause we will Rock You.
Associate Peter Freestone explains how important the items sold at auction are to Mercury:
Sotheby’s auction house is selling 30,000 Freddie Mercury items
“Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Freelance organizer. Avid analyst. Friendly troublemaker. Bacon junkie.”