The history of the Hope diamond, believed to be the
world's largest deep blue diamond, is full of twists.
The 112 carat stone that became the Hope began
when the French merchant traveler, Jean Baptiste
Tavernier purchase the stone from the Kollur mine in
Golconda, India, in the 17th century. Its color was
described by Tavernier as a beautiful violet.
The stone was sold to King Louis XIV of France in
1668 with 14 other large diamonds and several
smaller ones. In 1673 the stone was recut by the
court jeweler resulting in a 67-carat stone. Because
of its intestine steely-blue, it was known as the 'Blue
Diamond of the Crown 'or the' French Blue '.
In 1749, King Louis XV had the stone reset and
during the looting in 1792 the French Blue diamond
The blue diamond resurfaced in London by 1813 and
was owned by jeweler Daniel Eliason. Strong
evidence showed that the stone was the recut
French Blue and the same stone known today as the
Hope Diamond. The blue diamond that surfaced in
London was estimated at 44 carat. There was
evidence that it was acquainted by King George IV of
England, and upon King George's death, the diamond
was sold to pay off debts.
By 1839, the blue diamond was in procession of
Henry Philip Hope, from what the Hope diamond
takes its name. The Hope family is said to have been
tainted with the diamond's curse. According to
legend, the once-rich Hopes bankrupt because of the
The diamond changed hands several times during the
next several years, ending with Pierre Cartier. In
1910, the Hope was bought by the mining heiress
Evalyn Walsh Mclean, of Washington. Though Evalyn
Mclean wore the Hope diamond as a good luck charm,
others saw the curse strike her too. Her first son died
in a car crash, her daughter killed herself and her
husband was declared insane and bound to a
mental institution until his death in 1941.On her
death, Harry Winston bought the Hope diamond and
later donated to the Smithsonian Institution.
For the next ten years the Hope Diamond was show
at many exhibits and charitable events throughout
the world. By contrast, the stone's ownership by the
Smithsonian has been much more fortress. Today, it
is the institution's most popular artifact.
Hope Diamond Facts:
Dark Blue in Color
Size: 21.78mm wide, 25.60 mm long, 12.00 mm deep.
It is surrounded by 16 white diamonds plus an
additional 45 white diamonds which make up the
Source by Ally Too