The Bapst Pearls
Magnificent Pair of Pearls

The Bapst unusual nearly matched pair of valuable pearls.

Very practical is the account given by Streeter of a pair of magnificent spherical pearls (the Bapst Pearls) exhibited at the Paris Exhibition in 1878 by Messres. Bapst of Paris.

One of these pearls--then weighing 116 grains--was purchased by Mr. Streeter in 1877, and by him sold to a leading merchant of London, who skillfully removed a blemish on it, reducing it to 113 3/4 grains in weight.

After holding it for some months, it occurred to him that it would match a pearl sold by Hunt and Roskell to Dhuleep Singh about fifteen years previously.

On comparison, the two were found to match perfectly, one weighing 113 3/4 grains and the other 113 1/4 grains.

The two were eventually sold early in 1878 "for 4800 pounds, which was even then much below their value, and today they would be worth 10,000 pounds. They were exhibited in the great Paris Exposition in 1878, where they attracted universal attention, and were pronounced by connoisseurs to be the most extraordinary pair of pearls ever seen in Europe. They were sold from the exhibition to an individual for a very large sum." (Streeter, "Pearls and Pearling Life," London, 188, pp.295, 296.)

Information from 1908 on the Babst Pearls as recorded by Kunz and Stevenson in "The Book of the Pearl".

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