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Son Buys Back Princess' Portrait

The anonymous purchaser of a $1.26 million portrait of Princess Margaret has revealed himself — as the late princess' son.

David Armstrong Jones, Viscount Linley, decided to buy back the item after the auction's haul on its opening day far outstripped earlier estimates, his spokeswoman Christina MacMillan said Tuesday.

Linley and his sister organized the high-profile auction of their mother's possessions in order to pay a $5.6 million inheritance tax on the estate.

The 1957 Pietro Annigoni portrait, hyped as one of the bigger-ticket items in the frenzied two-day bidding war, opened at Christie's at $370,000.

The 800 lots of artwork, jewelry and furniture, fetched $25.5 million over two days — more than four times the amount predicted.

Linley intends for the painting to be publicly displayed, MacMillan said, and discussions on the venue are under way.

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