If you’re a fan of European history, royal jewels, or the finest button collections, there’s an episode of History’s hit reality show Pawn Stars that you simply must see. Since its debut in 2009, the show has been sharing the most unusual and hard-to-find things that have come into the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop, located just outside of Las Vegas, Nevada, and the Harrison family, who owns the shop, is always delighted to see rare and exclusive items.
Rick and Corey are presented with a case of 12 beautiful paste diamond buttons allegedly owned by the famously beheaded queen of France, Marie Antoinette, in the 2012 Pawn Stars episode “Love Me Spender,” according to IMDb. The pawn shop owners are ecstatic to have such a unique piece of history, but they quickly learn that while the sparkling buttons almost definitely do have a link to French royalty, it isn’t with the unfortunate queen. With that, we now know how much the shopkeepers paid for these post-Napoleonic royal jewels.
For his collection of royal buttons, a customer asks the Pawn Stars boys for $10,000
A rare book dealer brings the stunners in and claims he wants to sell them because he “doesn’t trade in buttons.” For the rare collection, he hopes to receive $10,000. When Rick returns to the store, he inquires as to how the seller knows the buttons belonged to Marie Antoinette, and the customer refers to the House of Bourbon coat of arms, which he believes the queen must have worn on all of her belongings.
Rick is intrigued, and the paste diamonds (glass with lead melted into it) on the buttons are “definitely something fancy enough to be worn by a queen,” he says. Rick acknowledges that the pieces, particularly the complete collection, are a rare find and that he is confident there will be a demand for them, especially given their possible relation to a famous figure of French royalty, in his own aside.
The collection of jewelled buttons owned by post-Napoleonic French royalty was bought for $3,500 by Pawn Stars.
Unfortunately for the seller, Rick points out that the coat of arms printed on the box is a variant used by French royalty long after Marie Antoinette’s head was chopped off.
After some haggling, the two agree on a price of $3,500 for the package of 12 buttons, which Rick says is still of interest to collectors. He also mentions that if he can figure out who the bejewelled buttons belonged to, his purchase would be even more valuable. After accepting the $3,500 bid for the royal jewels, the seller expressed gratitude to Corey, saying he was “strangely interested in the buttons.”
Finally, the Pawn Stars stars seemed to have gotten a decent deal by paying just $3,500 for the post-Napoleonic royal jewels. Even if the buttons did not belong to Marie Antoinette, they are interesting pieces of history.