Extraordinary Diamonds Part 3
For this last entry in the Extraordinary Diamonds series from Stewart Kuper Jewelers, we are looking to the spooky! Sure, Halloween is far off, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look to curses in June! It’s like Christmas in July, only creepier. Alright let’s get into it!
This entire entry could be on just the Hope Diamond, that is how lengthy the story is behind this marvelous piece. Coming in at 45.52 carats with an antique cushion cut, the Hope Diamond is estimated to be worth $200 -$250 million. Here’s where the curse comes in. The diamond is surrounded by a curse that brings about tragedy or misfortune to those who own it. Supposed fates include suicide, murder by Russian revolutionists, imprisonment, even more murder, and ‘torn to pieces by a French mob.’
This diamond, now a part of Queen Elizabeth’s crown, is believed to have originally been the eye of an idol of a Hindu goddess. It was then a part of the Peacock Throne built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan but was imprisoned by his son following a coup. Through a succession of bloody ends to various rulers it found its way to England. On board, the voyage didn’t fare so hot, with an outbreak of cholera. Supposedly, the stone carries a Hindu curse that only a woman can wear the diamond safely, that any man who tries will suffer its misfortunes.
Mined in India and stolen out of the mine by a slave in a self-inflicted wound, the stone was smuggled away by the slave and English captain. The captain had other ideas and drowned the slave at sea, to sell it himself. The slave laid a curse upon it before he died. The stone then went to an English governor in Madras and then to the French Regent Philippe II (where the stone received its name.) Then stolen, lost in the French Revolution before winding up in the hilt of Napoleon I’s sword. And we all know how that went.
While many of these tales may be fabricated to increase the allure, there is no doubt that they are fascinating. We’ll see you next time on the blog!