Life & Design

Countess Mountbatten's heirlooms are up for auction next month - including a Fabergé inkwell

Sotheby's will auction the belongings of the eminent aristocrat, who is cousin to Prince Phillip and a descendant of the last Tsarina of Russia

Sotheby's will auction the belongings of the 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma who was a descendant of Queen Victoria
(Image credit: Sotheby's)

Over 350 belongings of the late Countess Mountbatten of Burma, will be auctioned by the prestigious auction house, Sotheby's, in late March. 

As the great-great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, great-niece of Russia's last Tsarina, and the daughter of Britain's last Viceroy of India, the Countess lived an extraordinarily elegant lifestyle alongside a dazzling dynasty of royal figures.

Lady Mountbatten, succeeded her father Lord Mountbatten after his assassination in 1979 as documented in Netflix's The Crown. Together with her husband, 7th Lord Brabourne, she filled Newhouse, her eighteenth-century home, with fine art, furniture, sculptures, and books. These were inspired by the places she traveled to, and the dignitaries with whom she partied her way through the 20th century.  

Sotheby's are, however, offering a rare chance to bring these imperial treasures into your home, as they are selling hundreds of pieces from Newhouse at auction. Prices vary between  £80 – 100,000, meaning you can pick up one of the Countess's pre-loved belongings for under £100 ($136).

Sotheby's will auction the belongings of the 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma who was a descendant of Queen Victoria

(Image credit: Sotherby’s)

Among the pieces available to purchase between 20 – 23 March will be a Fabergé silver-gilt inkwell, a Parisian-made evening bag, an Anglo-Indian cabinet, and a pair of portraits from the 17th century, amongst other precious furnishings.  

Admirers also have the chance to pick up a heartfelt anniversary gift from Countess Mountbatten to Lord Brabourne, as the sale includes two enamel elephants made in Jaipur which the Countess engraved with 'Edwina from Dickie’ and '18 July 1946'.

Sotheby's will auction the belongings of the 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma who was a descendant of Queen Victoria

(Image credit: Sotheby's)

In their discussion of the auction, Countess Mountbatten's family shared: ‘Our overriding desire when organizing our mother's affairs is to honor her wishes and celebrate the memory of both our mother and our father. They had discussed these arrangements with us, and we are simply putting their plans into effect.' 

The Mountbatten's family then added: 'We are of course keeping many things and importantly amongst these are objects which are of sentimental value and much loved.'

Sotheby's will auction the belongings of the 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma who was a descendant of Queen Victoria

(Image credit: Sotheby's)

'Lady Mountbatten's residence, Newhouse was a private place for entertaining only the closest of family and friends, capturing all the magic of a stately home on an intimate scale,' revealed Harry Dalmeny, Chairman of Sotheby's in the UK & Ireland.

Through her belongings, many passed down from members of the extended family over the years; collectors have the chance to see the story of the twentieth century unfold and acquire evocative vestiges of a glittering way of life.'