Considering, for every carat of rough diamonds recovered, more than 250 tonnes of ore has to be blasted, crushed and processed, these diamonds then are priceless. You will be impressed to know that most of these famous diamonds had their origins in India and are now housed in famous Museums around the world. The most mysterious of them all is the-
1] How the HOPE DIAMOND, killed the hopes of all its owners:- Currently housed in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, 45.52 Carats, is ironically named Hope diamond (named for its purchaser, Henry Thomas Hope) became associated with a run of bad luck for its owners.
The diamond is said to bring misfortune to its possessors, because it is believed to be stolen from an eye of a Hindu idol of the goddess Sita in India. And indeed many who possessed the Hope diamond died young or went bankrupt or were killed. It is thought to be a part of the famous Blue Tavernier Diamond, brought to Europe from India in l642, mined at the Kollur mines of Guntur, Andhra Pradesh, India. The Blue was purchased by King Louis XIV who had it cut to 67.50 carats from 112 carats to bring out its brilliance.
The diamond was stolen during the French Revolution, and a smaller diamond of similar color was sold in 1830 to Hope, an English banker. After inheriting the diamond, Hope’s son lost his fortune. It was eventually acquired by an American widow,
Mrs. Edward McLean, whose family then suffered a series of catastrophes: her only child was accidentally killed, the family broke up, Mrs. McLean lost her money, and then committed suicide. When Harry Winston, the New York diamond merchant, bought the stone in 1949, many clients refused touch the stone. To commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the diamond in the Museum, Smithsonian Channel invited the American public to cast their vote on a new commemorative setting for the Hope Diamond, from three designs created by Harry Winston Inc.
The new design unveiled on the 20th of November 2010 is called Embracing Hope , chosen from the pre short listed design shown above. Embracing Hope includes two intertwined platinum bands, studded with 300 baguette stones. The Hope will be displayed briefly in its temporary setting next spring, the museum said. The diamond will be returned to its original setting, a pendant circled by diamonds, on a diamond necklace
2] How did the Koh I Noor from India end up on Queen Elizabeths crown travelling through 600 odd years :- Legend has suggested that the stone may date from before the time of Christ; theory indicates the possibility of its appearance in the early years of the 1300s; history proves its existence for the past two and a half centuries.105.60 Carats, an oval cut gem, now part of the British Crown Jewels. The name of this diamond means “Mountain of Light” and its history, dating back to1304, is the longest of all famous diamonds.
It was captured by the Rajahs of Malwa in the sixteenth century by the Mogul, Sultan Babur and remained in the possession of later Mogul emperors. It may have been set in the famous Peacock Throne made for Shah Jehan.
After the break-up of the Persian empire the diamond found its way to India. It may have traveled to Afghanistan with a bodyguard of Nadir Shah, who fled with the stone when the Shah was murdered, to be later offered to Ranjit Singh of the Punjab in exchange for military help (which was never delivered). After fighting broke out between the Sikhs and the British, The East India Company claimed the diamond as a partial indemnity, and then presented it to Queen Victoria in 1850. When the stone came from India, it weighed l986 carats; it was later recut to l08.93 carats.
It was first worn by the Queen in a brooch. It was later set in the State Crown, worn by Queen Alexandra and Queen Mary, and 1937 was worn for by Queen Elizabeth for her coronation. It is kept in the Tower of London, with the other Crown Jewels.
3]Why CULLINANA the Star of Africa is the biggest diamond in the world :- The Cullinan diamond is the largest rough gem-quality diamond ever found, at 3,106.75 carats.The largest polished gem from the stone is named Cullinan I or the Great Star of Africa, and at 530.4 carats. It was the largest polished diamond in the world until the 1985 discovery of the Golden Jubilee Diamond. It was found by Frederick Wells, surface manager of the Premier Diamond Mining Company in Cullinan, on January 26, 1905.
The stone was named after Sir Thomas Cullinan, the owner of the diamond mine who presented it to King Edward VII on his birthday. It was cut into three large parts by Asscher Brothers of Amsterdam, and eventually into 9 large gem-quality stones and a number of smaller fragments.
In 1905, transport from South Africa to England posed a security problem. Detectives from London were placed on a steamboat that was rumored to carry the stone, but this was a diversionary tactic. The stone on that ship was a fake, meant to attract those who would be interested in stealing it. The actual diamond was sent to England in a plain box via parcel post, albeit registered
4] How Darya-Ye-Noor found its way to Persia from the Mughal Empire :- Darya-ye Noor Diamond is recognized as the possession of the first Mogul emperor of India and is ranked as the most eminent diamond among the Iranian Crown Jewels. ‘Darya-ye Noor’ is a Persian word meaning “Sea of Light”. The Darya-ye-Noor is known as one of the largest diamonds in the world and has a body mass of 182 carats (36.4 g) The diamond has a unique pale pink color that makes it a rare diamond. The extraction of this diamond was in India at the Golconda mine, which is in the southern India. The diamond was a precious possession of the Mughal knights.
The invasion of the adventurer, Nader Shah of Persia occurred in 1739 and the adventurer congregated a lot of possessions from the wealthy Mughal treasury that included the Darya-ye Noor, which were carried to Persia leaving the country of origin forever. The Darya-ye Noor presently forms part of the Iranian Crown Jewels and is on display at the Central Bank of Iran in Tehran
5] The symbol of love between Liz Taylor and Richard Burton:-The original diamond was found in the Premier mine in South Africa in 1966 and weighed 240.8 carats. The Taylor-Burton diamond was cut into a pear shape by jeweller Harry Winston and weighs 69.42 carats. Actor Richard Burton purchased the diamond for his wife Elizabeth Taylor to celebrate her 40th birthday in 1972 In 1978 Elizabeth Taylor sold the Taylor-Burton diamond after her divorce with Richard Burton. The diamond is now owned by Mr. Robert Mouawad who had the diamond slightly recut.
6] Why the Green Diamond from India is called the The Dresden Green :- The Dresden Green diamond originally from India, has got its name from Dresden, a city in Saxony in Germany, where it has been displayed for more than 200 years. The first time the diamond was mentioned was in the 1700’s.
In 1741 King Augustus III. purchased the green diamond, which is the largest natural green diamond of the world with a weight of 41 carats. Augustus had the green diamond set in a Golden Vlies Ornament. Only a few years later the ornament was rearranged, because Augustus was no member of the Order of the Golden Vlies. The Dresden Green was worked into a hat clasp along with other diamonds. This ornament is now on display in the Green Vault in the Dresden Castle.
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