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September 20, 2022 12:55 pm

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Judicial Collar Is Top Selling Item in Auction of Her Personal Belongings

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg participates in taking a new family photo with her fellow justices, at the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, June 1, 2017. Photo: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst

A judicial collar necklace owned by the late Jewish Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was the highest selling item in an online auction of 76 objects from her personal estate.

The collar necklace featuring round gilt glass beads in a woven design was estimated at $3,000 to $5,000 but ended up selling for $176,775. The item was one of the collars that “The Notorious RBG” kept in her chambers at the Supreme Court. Many of Ginsburg’s trademark collars, which were a part of her signature wardrobe style during her time as a Supreme Court justice, have been donated to institutions or gifted to family and friends. This marks the first time her collars have ever been up for sale, according to Bonhams, which hosted the auction.

A second collar was withdrawn from the auction for unknown reasons. It was embroidered with the phrase “It’s not a sacrifice, it’s family” — Ginsburg’s husband stock response when people asked how he felt about uprooting his life to relocate for his wife’s job.

Other items belonging to Ginsburg that were sold in the online auction included gavels and lace gloves, silk scarves, jewelry boxes, kitchenware, wall art, a Passover card from her mother, which sold for $3,570, and a glass evil eye, which was purchased for $7,650. A white beaded purse by Walborg and handmade in Japan sold for $4,080, while Ginsburg’s opera glasses, engraved with “Southern District of New York,” sold for $10,838.

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Ginsburg’s items sold in total for $516,090, with all proceeds going to the RBG Endowment Fund benefiting SOS Children’s Villages, which is the world’s largest organization dedicated to caring for children who have lost or are at risk of losing parental care. Bonhams closed the online auction on Sept. 16, two days before the second anniversary of Ginsburg’s death.

The auction house’s first sale of Ginsburg’s personal items in January 2022 generated $2.4 million, according to Art News.

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