Big John’s fossil, the largest triceratops ever identified, was sold yesterday in Paris for a record € 6.6 million.
If dinosaurs fascinate you and you have a well-stocked bank account, the taking of a life may have just passed your fingers. The largest triceratops skeleton ever identified was recently sold for a record amount.
Big John – that’s his name – was sold to an American individual at 6.6 million euros, at the end of an auction held yesterday at the Drouot hotel in Paris. A tidy sum, knowing that this lot was estimated between 1.2 and 1.5 million euros. This is also a record at European level, according to The world.
According to CNN, he will therefore return to Uncle Sam’s country after a long exile. Since its discovery in South Dakota in 2014, this spectacular fossil has been pampered with the greatest care by a team of specialists in Trieste, Italy.
A “masterpiece”Paleontological kit
They were the ones who had the difficult task of reconstructing the complete 60% skeleton. A life-size puzzle of 200 pieces that required exemplary meticulousness; after seven years of hard work, their efforts have finally paid off. They produced a superb reconstruction of eight meters long and three meters high.
In addition to its state of preservation, which makes this “masterpiece”So precious, it is above all its impressive size. According to the work of Italian researchers relayed by The world, it would be 5 to 10% larger than its congeners. His skull also presents some remarkable peculiarities. It is notably one of the rare almost complete copies. There is also a laceration important, probably inflicted by the horn of a rival male during a fight.
Obviously, we do not know the name of the lucky owner. But buyers don’t rush to the gate for such wonders; in the absence of his exact identity, it is therefore possible to have an idea of his profile. The auctioneer of the sale, Maître Alexandre Giquello, also delivered a very interesting analysis at the microphone of France Inter. He explains that these objects tend to attract “science and paleontology enthusiasts, often quite young, from new technologies ” who bathed in the “Hollywood mythology” of the “Jurassic Park generation”.
We also know that this mystery shopper has no plans to give it to an institution. First, Big John will come to fill his “private collection”. In the future, however, it could be “Loaned, given or exhibited”, according to The world. The lucky winner has in any case achieved a great deal, when we know that some entirely virtual NFTs have already left for more than ten times that amount!