Billion-year-old meteorites are being auctioned for astronomical prices

A rare collection of beautiful meteorites being sold at auction are literally out of this world.

The extraterrestrial specimens, many of which are billions of years old, include a sample of rock in the shape of the moon, and are expected to fetch up to £400,000.

The Lake Murray meteorite, which is older than mankind itself, it expected to go for up to £30,000.

The crystalline rock originates from the molten core of an asteroid between Mars and Jupiter, landing on Earth more than a hundred million years before the earliest humans.

A piece of lunar jewelry with extraterrestrial gemstones is estimated to go for around £27,000 and a smaller lunar sphere is expected to fetch up to £15,000.

James Hyslop, Head of the Science and Natural History Department at Christie’s, New York, USA, said: ‘The extraordinary, otherworldly beauty of the best meteorites is celebrated in this highly curated auction.

‘From aesthetic sculptural forms from outer space to polished 4.5 billion-year-old specimens studded with extraterrestrial peridot (the birthstone for August) there is something for anyone who has ever looked up into the night sky.’

Additional highlights from the sale include three lots containing ‘the oldest matter mankind can touch’. This consists of two select specimens from the largest meteorite shower since the dawn of civilization (with an estimated sale value of between £11,500 and £23,000) and the main mass of the New York meteorite which could fetch between £19,000 and £30,000.

The auction is being held online with bidding set to close on August 25. If you’re curious, you can view it here.

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