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World Famous Diamonds

Author: Ian Maher

The most famous diamonds in the world carry with them rich histories of the fortune and calamity of the lives which they have touched throughout time. Some world renowned diamonds have made the journey through the hands of royalty over centuries while others have only been unearthed in recent decades. Here we examine a few of the most coveted diamonds that have ever been discovered.

-The Hope Diamond: Perhaps the most well-known diamond in the United States, the Hope diamond endured hundreds of years and passed through several owners before it was donated by Harry Winston Inc. to the Smithsonian Institution in 1958. This 45.52 carat dark grayish blue cushion antique cut diamond has long been thought to bestow upon its owners a curse of tragedy and misfortune.

-The Cullinan Diamond: The largest rough diamond ever unearthed, the original Cullinan was discovered in South Africa in 1905 and weighed an astonishing 3,106 carats. The Cullinan diamond, named after the owner of the mining company where it was discovered, was later cut into 105 diamonds, the most notable of which is the pear shaped Cullinan I, also known as the Star of Africa diamond, weighing 530.2 carats. For many years the Star of Africa was known as the largest cut diamond in the world, though in recent years this record has been surpassed by The Golden Jubilee, at 545.67 carats, and a nameless fancy black diamond weighing in at 555.55 carats.

-The Regent Diamond: Thought by many to be the most stunning diamond worldwide, the perfectly cut Regent Diamond has a history of both prestige and voracity. The Regent was originally called the Pitt after Sir Thomas Pitt, a governor who purchased the diamond in the 1700s and had it cut and polished into the cushion shaped, 140.5 carat diamond in the French Royal Treasury today. Becoming known as the Regent in 1717 when it was purchased for the French Crown, the Regent Diamond has adorned the Crown of Louis XV and the sword of Napoleon Bonaparte.

-The Centenary Diamond: Esteemed by diamond connoisseurs for its purity and color, the Centenary Diamond was discovered at the Premier Mine in July of 1986. Weighing 599.10 carats in the rough, the Centenary Diamond was carefully cut by Gabi Tolkowsky into the present day 273.85 carat modern cut flawless diamond residing since 1991 at the Tower of London.

-The Orlov (sometimes called Orloff): This uniquely shaped diamond was set in the Imperial Sceptre during the reign of Catherine the Great in the late 1700s. The shape of this bluish green tinted diamond weighing in at 189.62 carats has been widely likened to that of half of a pigeon’s egg. The distinctive shape of the Orlov leads many to believe that there exists a counterpart that has yet to be discovered.

 

 

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