`The Eye of Golconda` up for auction in Hong Kong

Last Updated: Monday, May 26, 2014 - 12:04

New Delhi: A rare necklace featuring a large Golconda diamond in the centre could fetch over USD 10,000,000 in a Christie`s auction in Hong Kong on May 27.

The centerpiece in the diamond and emerald necklace, known as "The Eye of Golconda" is the largest Golconda diamond ever to be auctioned in Asia, according to auctioneers.

The sensational necklace is estimated to fetch between USD 8,500,000 to USD 10,000,000 and is leading piece of a 300 lot sale with a combined estimation of over USD 100 million.

Golconda diamonds, the auctioneers say, are often described as "Diamonds of First Water", characterised by an almost indefinable water-clear appearance that attest to their diaphanous quality and a degree of transparency rarely seen in stones from other localities.
The Golconda region is universally famous for mines that have produced the world`s most famous and coveted gems, including the Hope Diamond, Idol`s Eye, the Koh-i-Noor and the Darya-i-Noor.

The introduction of diamonds to the West is attributed to celebrated French traveller and gem-merchant, Jean-Baptiste Tavernier (1605-1689). During the 17th century, he travelled to India and brought back a spellbinding stock of diamonds that dazzled the French Court.

These sparklers of extraordinary transparency came from Golconda is said to have captivated King Louis XIV called them "pools of crystal water".

They are often graded as Type IIa. Type IIa diamonds represent less than 2 per cent of the world`s production of gem-quality diamonds. They are said to be the purest form of diamonds and show exceptional optical transparency.

The pear and cushion-shaped diamond and emerald pendent necklace up on sale has two important Golconda diamonds, weighing 40.05 and 6.76 carats respectively, auctioneers said.

Christie`s Hong Kong sale would also unveil a 9.38 carats pear-shaped fancy intense pink diamond that has a pre-auction estimate between USD 5,800,000- USD 8,300,000.
In addition, two jadeite jewels, Burmese rubies and sapphires, Colombian emeralds and exclusive vintage pieces from Bulgari, Harry Winston and Van Cleef and Arpels complete the sale.

The recent Geneva sale by Christie`s earlier this month, which set an auction record for the world`s largest flawless vivid blue diamond at USD 23.79 million had also offered two important important pieces with Indian provenance. The `Rajah Diamond` a 26.14 carat old-mine brilliant-cut diamond fetched auctioneers over USD 4 million.

Also, a 17th century seven Mughal spinel bead necklace engraved with the names of Mughal emperors Akbar and Jahangir realised USD 1.8 million in the same sale.

PTI

First Published: Monday, May 26, 2014 - 11:29

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