French queen's head makes a royal $1.3m in Paris auction

A recently rediscovered marble head thought to depict French queen Jeanne de Bourbon has sold for $1.1m at a Paris auction house.

Jeanne de Bourbon head sculpture
There was strong interest prior to the sale from major institutions

The piece was created in the 14th century and has been attributed to Jean de Liege, a Flemish sculptor known to have worked for the French royals. It is thought to have been part of the queen's tomb, which was desecrated during the French revolution.

The sale took place on December 11 at Piasa, with the auction house stating that it had interest from the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Louvre, which already houses fragments of the tomb.

Jeanne de Bourbon passed away in 1378 due to complications with her ninth child. As was tradition, her heart and entrails were buried at separate locations, while her body was laid to rest in the Basilique Saint-Denis.

The marble head was brought to auction by an Belgian industrialist.

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