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Royal bloodstain sells for $24,400 at auction

NEED TO KNOW
  • Cloth believed to be stained with blood of Louis XVI sells to French collector
  • Louis XVI was guillotined in Paris during the French Revolution
Louis XVI Portrait

Royal blood: It's not just for royals anymore. A piece of cloth believed to be stained with the blood of former French King Louis XVI, who was executed following the 1789 revolution, sold at a Paris auction Wednesday for $24,400 (19,000 Euros).

According to AFP, a French collector who's a Louis XVI enthusiast purchased the cloth, which came housed in a miniature coffin and accompanied by a handwritten note that reads "The precious blood of Louis XVI, 21 January 1793."

Jan. 21, 1793, is the day the king was beheaded at the guillotine in Paris.

After the king's execution, many Parisians dipped their own clothing or pieces of cloth into the pool of blood left near the guillotine to save as keepsakes. The bloodstained cloth auctioned Wednesday is thought to be one of these macabre souvenirs, though as the AFP reports, only DNA testing could truly confirm the Louis XVI connection.

The same collector also bought a buckle from one of Louis XVI's shoes for about a quarter of the price of the cloth.

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