California students given cookies baked with grandfather’s ashes: media

A California high school student is accused of baking her grandfather's cremated remains into a batch of cookies and handing them out to classmates who ate them. (Reuters)
Updated 18 October 2018
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California students given cookies baked with grandfather’s ashes: media

  • Police say some of the Da Vinci Charter Academy students were fully aware and ate the cookies anyway

LOS ANGELES: A teenage girl in California allegedly baked her grandfather’s ashes into cookies and handed them out to her school friends, local media reported on Wednesday.
The student is said to have given her baked goods to at least nine students, the Los Angeles Times said, citing police in Davis, near the state capital Sacramento.
Some ate the cookies without knowing about the macabre extra ingredient and were horrified, Lt. Paul Doroshov said, according to the Times.
In a bizarre twist, others among the Da Vinci Charter Academy students were fully aware and ate the cookies anyway, Doroshov told the newspaper, adding that he found the claims credible.
Student Andy Knox told local television station KCRA he was on his way into class when the unidentified young baker offered him one of her treats saying they contained a “special ingredient.”
“I thought that she put drugs in it or something. So I asked her if like, ‘Is this a weed cookie or something?’” he was quoted as saying.
“And she said ‘No.’ She said it was her grandpa’s ashes. And then she kind of laughed. And I was really, I was kind of horrified.”
Police are investigating the October 4 incident, according to multiple media reports, but have not made any arrests or taken action against the girl.
The Davis Joint Unified School District said in a statement its students were safe and there was “no health risk” to anyone involved.
“This recent case has been particularly challenging and we have responded appropriately and in the most respectful and dignified way possible,” it went on.
“Those who were involved are remorseful and this is now a personal family matter and we want to respect the privacy of the families involved.”


Marie Antoinette’s exquisite jewels go under the hammer

Updated 12 November 2018
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Marie Antoinette’s exquisite jewels go under the hammer

  • The treasures were secretly whisked out of Paris in 1791 as King Louis XVI, his queen and their children prepared to escape during the French Revolution

GENEVA: Marie Antoinette’s dazzling diamonds and pearls, unseen in public for two centuries, will go on sale in Geneva on Wednesday in what is being billed as one of the most important royal jewelry auctions in history.
The treasures were secretly whisked out of Paris in 1791 as King Louis XVI, his queen and their children prepared to escape during the French Revolution.
They are part of a major collection, held by the Italian royal House of Bourbon-Parma, that is being sold by Sotheby’s auction house.
Out of the more than 100 lots, 10 pieces belonged to the ill-fated Marie Antoinette, the last queen of France before the revolution.
She was guillotined in Paris in October 1793 at the age of 37.
“It is the sale of the 21st century. Because how do you top Marie Antoinette?” Andres White Correal, Sotheby’s senior director of jewelry, said last month.
The highlight is Marie Antoinette’s Pearl, a natural pearl and diamond pendant valued at $1-2 million.
A natural pearl and diamond necklace composed of three rows of more than 100 slightly graduated pearls is expected to fetch $200,000-300,000, as are a pair of pearl and diamond pendant earrings.
A monogrammed ring containing a lock of her hair is valued at $8,000-10,000.
A fine natural pearl and diamond necklace is meanwhile priced at $40,000-70,000, while a double ribbon bow diamond brooch is estimated at $50,000-80,000.
“It is one of the most important royal jewelry collections ever to appear on the market and each and every jewel is absolutely imbued with history,” said Daniela Mascetti, deputy chair of Sotheby’s jewelry Europe.
The jewels followed a winding path highlighting European power dynamics in the 18th and 19th centuries.
According to accounts written by the queen’s lady in waiting, Madame Campan, Marie Antoinette spent an entire evening in the Tuileries Palace wrapping all her diamonds, rubies and pearls in cotton and enclosing them in a wooden chest.
They were sent to Brussels, governed by her sister Archduchess Marie-Christine, before being sent on to the French queen’s native Austria, and to the safe-keeping of her nephew, the emperor.
In 1792, the royal family was imprisoned in Paris. The king and queen were executed the next year, and their 10-year-old son, Louis XVIII died in captivity.
Only their daughter, Marie Therese of France, survived. She was sent to Austria in 1796, where she was given her mother’s jewels.
She had no children herself, but passed on the jewels to her niece and adopted daughter, Louise of France, Duchess of Parma, who in turn left them to her son, Robert I (1848-1907), the last ruling Duke of Parma.
They have been privately owned by relatives ever since.
Wednesday’s Bourbon-Parma sale also contains jewelry belonging to Charles X, including a diamond tiara; jewels from empress Marie Therese of Austria — Marie Antoinette’s mother — and Austrian emperor Franz Joseph I, who died in 1916.
The fleur de lys tiara, made in 1912, contains diamonds from the collection of Charles X, Marie Antoinette’s brother-in-law, who died in 1836. It is estimated at $350,000-550,000.