NEW YORK, December 12, 2007 - A gold and enamel medal that once belonged to the American Revolutionary hero the Marquis de Lafayette was bought at Sotheby's auction here Tuesday for 5.26 million dollars by France's Fondation de Chambrun.
Sold by Lafayette's descendants, the medal was given to the Frenchman in 1824 by relatives of America's first president George Washington, when Lafayette was 67 years old. Its pre-sale estimate was between four and 10 million dollars.
"We are thrilled with the results. This is the highest price ever paid for a medal," said David Redden, Sotheby's vice-president.