77-million-year-old dinosaur skeleton to go under the hammer for the first time

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A fossilised skeleton of a dinosaur which is believed to have roamed the earth around 77 million years ago is to go under the hammer later this month.

The Gorgosaurus dinosaur, measuring nearly 10 feet tall and 22 feet long, will be a highlight of Sotheby’s live Natural History auction taking place on July 28 in New York.

This will be the first time a dinosaur of this kind has been offered at auction and with an estimate of five to eight million dollars, it is considered one of the most valuable to ever appear on the market.

The Gorgosaurus dinosaur measures nearly 10 feet tall and 22 feet long. (Sotheby’s/PA)
The Gorgosaurus dinosaur measures nearly 10 feet tall and 22 feet long. (Sotheby’s/PA)

The Gorgosaurus is said to be a “close relative of the Tyrannosaurus rex” but they are believed to predate them by around 10 million years.

It is also described by Sotheby’s as a “fearsome apex carnivore that reigned during the Late Cretaceous period” which is believed to have roamed the earth approximately 77 million years ago.

The skeleton going on sale was discovered in 2018 in the Judith River Formation near Havre, Montana.

All known skeletons, both from the US and Canada, are housed in institutional collections, making this the only specimen of its kind available for private ownership.

The Gorgosaurus skeleton will go up for auction in New York on July 28 (Sotheby’s/PA)
The Gorgosaurus skeleton will go up for auction in New York on July 28 (Sotheby’s/PA)

The Natural History auction in which the Gorgosaurus will be offered is part of Sotheby’s Geek Week sales series, which will also include a section dedicated to meteorites.

Cassandra Hatton, Sotheby’s global head of science and popular culture, said: “In my career, I have had the privilege of handling and selling many exceptional and unique objects, but few have the capacity to inspire wonder and capture imaginations quite like this unbelievable Gorgosaurus skeleton.

“Excavated only a few years ago, a Gorgosaurus has never before been offered at auction, and the opportunity of sharing this dinosaur with the public for the first time is an immense pleasure and a highlight of my career.”

The Gorgosaurus skeleton will go on public display for the first time on July 21 at Sotheby’s York Avenue galleries in New York with the auction taking place on July 28.

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