Everyone loves a good mystery. Throw in glamorous players, far-away locales, and of course, exquisite and stunning gems, and you have a story that will garner rapt attention.
But, these aren’t just stories, they are open investigations, dedicated recovery missions and extensive inquiries for the most famous and well-known diamonds that the world has ever produced.
While we are lucky that some of these stones are on display for our enjoyment, or even for sale, some have simply vanished and their whereabouts unknown. All we can do is wait for them to pop up at auction some time.
Famous diamonds always do.
THE DARYA-YE-NOOR DIAMOND
Persian for “Sea of Light” or “Ocean of Light,” the Darya-ye-Noor Diamond is one of the largest diamonds in the world, a rare pale pink weighing approximately 182 carats. Possibly discovered as early as the 17th century, the diamond, like the Koh-i-Noor, was mined at the Golconda mines and was immediately taken up as possession by the Mughal emperors.
In 1739, the shah of Iran invaded Northern India, and occupied Delhi. As payment for returning the crown of India to the Mughal emperor, the diamond was given to the shah, as well as the Koh-i-Noor diamond. The treasures were carried into Iran, and have remained part of the Iranian Crown Jewels ever since. The Darya-ye-Noor diamond passed from father to son and so on, inscribed with names and worn in a variety of fashionable styles for the time; a brooch, armband and hat decoration.
The diamond is currently on display at the Central Bank of Iran in Tehran.
Interestingly, the diamond may be part of a larger pink diamond that had been studded in the throne of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. In 1965, a Canadian team conducting research on the Iranian Crown Jewels found that the French Jeweler, Jean-Baptiste Tavernier in 1642 alluded to a larger size, a “Diamanta Grande Table.” They diamond is considered to have been cut into two pieces, the larger Darya-ye-Noor and the smaller, 60-carat Noor-ol-Ein, presently studded in a tiara that is also in the Iranian Imperial Collection.
To see the two rare diamonds together must be royally intriguing.
Images and information courtesy of Famous Diamonds and Wikipedia.