Yesterday Sotheby's broke the world for the most valuable yellow diamond, just a matter of weeks after Christie's had done it with the Vivid Yellow. We thought that would be an excellent excuse to put together our Top Five list of valuable diamonds.
#5 De Beers Millennium Jewel 11
The De Beers Millennium Jewel 11 is a 5.16-carat diamond ring that sold for £4.12m ($6.5m) in 2010. A part of the 12-diamond DeBeers Millennium Jewels collection, intended to celebrate the millennium, it was the subject of a failed theft whilst it was on display at London's millennium dome.
It is currently mounted on a platinum ring, flanked by two small white diamonds.
#4 Heart of Eternity
The Heart of Eternity is a Fancy Vivid Blue diamond measuring 27.64 carats, probably the largest of this type in the world.
It too was a part of the De Beers Millennium Jewels collection, though it was actually cut by the Steinmetz group.
#3 The Sun Drop
On November 15th 2011, Sotheby's Geneva set a world auction record for a yellow diamond when it sold the Sun‐Drop Diamond for CHF 11,282,500 ($12,361,558) in Geneva. Weighing 110.03 carats, the exceptional stone ranks as the largest known pear‐shaped fancy vivid yellow diamond in the world.
This easily surpassed the $6.6m record that Christie's had set with the Vivid Yellow just a month earlier, and which that auctioneer had been holding since 1990, when the Golden Drop diamond held the honours.
#2 The Graff Pink Diamond
The Graff Pink diamond is themost expensive diamond eversold at auction. It fetched $45.75 million or £29.4 million at Sotheby's in November 2010. It has been graded a VVS2 clarity, type IIa, fancy intense pink diamond by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).
The diamond is a classic emerald cut with gently rounded corners. It has few inclusions and a homogenous colour.
The GIA states that the diamond may be "potentially flawless" after repolishing although some commentators state that there is a single flaw that is unnoticeable to the naked eye.
The diamond is set between shield-shaped diamond shoulders, in platinum, as a ring,
#1 Hope Diamond
The Hope diamond was the centrepiece of the famous jewellery collection held by Henry Philip Hope - and an infamous jewel as it has often been claimed to have been cursed.
It is believed to have originated with Jean-Baptiste Tavernier in his 17th century explorations in India. According to legend, the then 115 carat roughly-cut triangular diamond was one of the eyes of a sculpted statue of the goddess Sita, the wife of Rama, the seventh avatar of Vishnu which explained the apparent curse which afflicted those who possessed it.
Various myths built up around it, notably that it was present on the Titanic, causing the bad luck that made it sink.
The 45.52 carat gem is currently owned by a British collector and believed to be worth $350m.