World`s largest diamond, Mughal necklace in Geneva auction

New Delhi: A rare necklace, engraved with names of Mughal emperors Akbar and Jahangir goes under the hammer in Geneva tomorrow by Christie`s, which is also auctioning the world`s largest flawless blue diamond, in a sale expected to total $80 million.

Dating 17th century, the seven Mughal engraved spinel bead necklace is estimated to fetch between $1,500,00 to $2,000,000 at `Magnificent Jewels` sale, auctioneers said.

Mughal emperors were known for their love of precious stones. The tradition of engraving titles and names on stones began with the Timurids, who were the ancestors of Mughals. They did their engraving on diamonds, emeralds and other outstanding quality stones with large spinel beads considered to be their favourites.

As much as these gems were a symbol of the opulence and dignity of the empire, they were also treasured as protective talismans.

The Museum of Islamic Art in Qatar exhibits an important necklace with eleven Mughal spinel beads with a total weight of 877.23 carats. Three of them engraved with names of Emperor Jahangir and one with that of Emperor Shah Jahan.

Leading the `Magnificent Jewels` sale is world`s largest flawless vivid blue diamond `The Blue` estimated to fetch between $21,000,000- $25,000,000.

The diamond leads the 250 lot strong sale, estimated to mop up a total in the region of $80 million, Christie`s said.

Six months earlier, Christie`s Geneva sold `The Orange` the largest fancy vivid orange diamond in the world for $35.5 million, a global record for an orange diamond and a world auction record price per carat for any diamond at $2.4 million.

The sale will also feature many important coloured and colourless diamonds such as the 5.50 carat `The Ocean Dream`, the largest fancy vivid blue-green diamond in the world to come to auction, with an estimate of $7,500,00- $9,500,000.

`The Rajah Diamond` a 26.14 carat old-mine brilliant-cut diamond of is among 14 jewels that are being auctioned under `A Passion for Jewels: Collection of an European Gentleman`. The diamond is estimated to go for $3,000,00-5,000,000.

Another section of the sale `Noble Jewels` features a natural pearl and diamond necklace estimated at $550,000-700,000 and was orginally in the personal jewellery casket of Queen Elizabeth of Prussia.

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