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How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth? Unveiling The Mysteries

How much is the Hope Diamond worth? The 45.52-carat blue Hope Diamond is said to be cursed because of its relationship with several deaths; it is valued at $350 million.

Susanne Blaire
Susanne Blaire
Feb 10, 2024355 Shares11.4K Views
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  1. What Is Hope Diamond?
  2. How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth?
  3. Hope Diamond Properties
  4. Hope Diamond History
  5. FAQs - How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth?
  6. Final Words
How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth? Unveiling The Mysteries

How much is the Hope Diamondworth? The 45.52-carat blue Hope Diamond is said to be cursed because of its relationship with several deaths; it is valued at $350 million.

French Blue cravat pins were created from gemstonesmined in India in the 17th century and sold to Louis XIV.

After vanishing during the French Revolution, it was brought to England in a smuggled form. The diamond made its way from the possession of the British Royal Family to the United States.

Harry Winston, a jeweler, donated it to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC. The original French Blue may have included this gem.

What Is Hope Diamond?

A 45.52-carat diamond known as the Hope Diamond, mined in India's Guntur region in the 17th century, has a blue hue that is caused by minute concentrations of boron. Its enormous size has provided fresh insight into the process of diamond creation.

Jean-Baptiste Tavernier, a gem trader from France, bought the diamond in 1666 and rechristened it the French Blue. In 1668, he sold it to King Louis XIV of France.

The biggest piece was recut after being stolen in 1792 and appears in a gem catalog from 1839 under the Hope name. Multiple people have owned the diamond, but Washington socialite Evalyn Walsh McLean was one of them.

Harry Winston, a jeweler from New York, bought the diamond in 1949 and gave it to the Smithsonian in 1958.

Hope diamond is displayed.
Hope diamond is displayed.

How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth?

Today, the Hope Diamond commands a captivating presence within the Smithsonian Institution, encased in a mesmerizing glass cabinet. Behold a spectacular chainadorned with 45 pristine, colorless diamonds, culminating in the iconic Hope Diamond, a central pendant stone surrounded by an enchanting array of sixteen smaller diamonds.

While the elusive valuation of the Hope Diamond remains shrouded in mystery, speculative estimates place its worth between $200 and $250 million, with whispers suggesting an even more opulent value of approximately $350 million. This regal gem claims an esteemed position as the third most expensive diamond globally.

Yet, beyond the realm of monetary value, the Smithsonian bestows upon the Hope Diamond an irreplaceable status as a genuine American treasure, deeming it truly priceless. As a testament to its cultural significance, this illustrious gem stands resolute in its position—officially not for sale, guarding its allure and heritage for generations to come.

Hope Diamond Properties

Weight

Massive in stature, the Hope Diamond, scrutinized by the Gemological Institute of America's laboratory in December 1988, revealed its weight to be an astonishing 45.52 carats (9.104 g; 0.3211 oz).

Size And Shape

Unlike any ordinary gem, its size and form have drawn intriguing comparisons, resembling not only a pear-shaped walnut but also evoking the imagery of a pigeon egg.

The dimensions, measuring 25.60 mm in length, 21.78 mm in width, and 12.00 mm in depth (1 in × 7/8 in × 15/32 in), underscore the remarkable magnitude of this legendary diamond.

Color

Beautiful and uncommon, the Hope Diamond is often characterized as a sophisticated dark blue, steely blue, or dark greyish-blue. It was rated fancy deep grayish blue in 1996 by the Gemological Institute of America, a hue that is grayer than blue sapphires.

Incandescent light makes the "inky" effect of the dark modifier (mask) seem almost blackish-blue. Modern photography of the Hope Diamond makes extensive use of intense lighting to bring out the stone's radiance.

The Hope Diamond is often characterized as having "a sapphireblue" hue, which is reminiscent of a beautiful sapphire, in works of popular literature. Another way Tavernier said it was as a "beautiful violet."

Phosphorescence

Reveling in an extraordinary display, the Hope Diamond manifests an intense, brilliant red phosphorescence when exposed to short-wave ultraviolet light, creating a mesmerizing 'glow-in-the-dark' effect that persists even after the light source is extinguished.

This peculiar quality, contributing to its mystical allure, has led to the diamond's enduring reputation as "cursed." The vibrant red glow serves as a distinctive fingerprint, aiding scientists in the meticulous task of distinguishing genuine blue diamonds from their artificial counterparts, and is a result of the unique blend of boron and nitrogen within the stone.

Clarity

Delving into the inner characteristics of this legendary gem, the clarity of the Hope Diamond was scrutinized, revealing a classification of VS1, marked by the presence of whitish graining.

Cut

The intricate craftsmanship applied to its cut was described as a "cushion antique brilliant with a faceted girdle and extra facets on the pavilion," showcasing the meticulous artistry invested in enhancing its brilliance and radiance.

Chemical Composition

A deeper exploration unfolded in 2010 when the diamond underwent an extraction from its setting for a meticulous analysis of its chemical composition.

Precision boreholes, plunging a mere nanometer deep, unveiled the presence of boron, hydrogen, and potentially nitrogen, with boron concentrations varying from zero to eight parts per million.

It is this very boron content that serves as the alchemical agent, infusing the stone with its captivating blue hue. The chemical secrets encapsulated within the Hope Diamond further enhance its enigmatic and unparalleled mystique.

Hardness

The Hope Diamond, like other diamonds, is one of the toughest natural materials on Earth. However, improper handling may cause the crystal to fracture along weak planes in the bonds of the diamond's crystalline structure.

Diamond cutters use these weak planes to divide a large, uncut stone into smaller, perfect pieces before faceting.

The process of cutting an uncut raw diamond into a faceted diamond begins with placing the stone in a holder; then, diamond particles are embedded in specially manufactured metal wheels to grind the stone into its flat surfaces, or facets.

In order to create a gem that shines due to light refraction and reflection, the facets are ground and polished using progressively finer grades/grits of diamond powder until they reach a transparent mirror surface.

Hope Diamond History

Indian Period

Many people avoid this gem because of the urban superstition that claims it is cursed. But there are those who just appreciate its aesthetic value and disregard the rumors.

An Indian mine yielded the triangular Hope diamond, which is 112 3/16 carats and exquisitely violet in color. No one has been able to establish whether it was the Kollur mine in Golconda or not, and the precise site has remained a mystery.

Once visiting French businessman Jean-Baptiste Tavernier purchased the diamond at Golconda's diamond market and transported it to Europe, the diamond's formal history began.

The French Era

Traveler Jean-Baptiste Tavernier returned to France with the diamond, which King Louis XIV purchased. According to the diamond myth, which is often revived, the gem was taken from an altar dedicated to the goddess Sitâ. In 2007, however, François Farges of Paris's Muséum national d'histoire naturelle was able to piece together an entirely new narrative:

During his time in India under the Mughal Empire, Tavernier purchased the gem in the massive Golconde diamond market. The diamond is thought to have originated in a mine in what is now Andhra Pradesh, but scientists from the Natural History Museum have found the exact location of the mine. The Mughal records in Hyderabad even corroborate the second theory about the diamond's provenance.

There are stories circulating that the Hope diamond is cursed and has the power to murder anybody who gets their hands on it: Tavernier would have been a meal for wild animals after becoming destitute, but he actually passed away in Moscow at the age of 84 from old age. Louis XIV cut the stone, reducing its carat weight from 112.5 to 67.5, and gave the finished diamond the name "Violet de France," which now refers to French Blue in English.

The national furniture repository was the victim of a jewel robbery in September 1792, when the diamond was among the French crown jewels taken. They flee France with the diamond and its pilferers, bound for England. It wasn't until 1812—exactly twenty years and two days after the theft—that the stone's trace was found, indicating that it had been recut to make it more marketable.

The Era Of Britain

Thomas Hope, a banker in London and a member of the affluent Hope family who ran the Hope & Co. bank, purchased the stone from merchant and receiver Daniel Eliason in 1824. Thomas Hope died in 1831.

Henry Philip Hope, Thomas's younger brother and a gem collector in his own right, insures the stone, while Louisa de la Poer Beresford, Thomas's wife, carries the policy. The Hope family continues to own the diamond, which now bears their name and is included in Henry Philip's inventory after his death in 1839 (without any heirs).

Henry Thomas Hope (1807–1862), the firstborn son of Thomas Hope, was the proud owner of the stone. It had previously been shown at the Great Exhibition in London in 1851 and the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1855. Henrietta, his adopted daughter and sole heiress, wed Henry Pelham-Clinton (1834–1879) in 1861. Pelham-Clinton was already a father at the time:

Henrietta establishes a "trustee" and passes the pierre to Henry Francis Hope Pelham-Clinton (1866-1941), her stepson's grandson, out of concern that he would fritter away the family riches. It was a life insurance policy that he inherited in 1887.

Only with the approval of the court and the board of trustees can he detach himself from the stone. Henry Francis, in 1897, contributes to his family's bankruptcy by living above their means. Actress May Yohé (in) is his only breadwinner.

The court gave May the go-ahead to sell the stone in 1901 so she could pay off her obligations, but by then May had already gone for the US with another man. Henry Francis Hope Pelham-Clinton resold the stone to Adolphe Weil, a jeweler from London, in 1902. Weil then sold it to Simon Frankel, an American trader, for $250,000.

Time In The United States

Throughout the 1900s, Hope changed hands many times. Pierre Cartier, the son of the renowned jeweler Alfred Cartier, sold it to Evalyn Walsh McLean in 1910 and 1911 for $300,000. After he died in 1947, it went to Harry Winston in 1949, and in 1958, Winston gave it to the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC. He had possessed it since 1911.

Winston discreetly sends the stone to the Smithsonian by postal service, enclosing it in a compact kraft paper package, to ensure its safe and secure travel.

With six million visitors per year, it is the second most admired art object in the world, right behind the Mona Lisa at the Louvre with eight million. The diamond, which is still the largest blue diamond ever discovered to date, is on display in the renowned institution, where it enjoys a reserved room.

FAQs - How Much Is The Hope Diamond Worth?

What Is The Current Appraised Value Of The Hope Diamond?

The exact worth of the Hope Diamond is challenging to pinpoint, but its historical and cultural significance places it beyond conventional valuation.

Has The Hope Diamond's Value Changed Over Time?

Over time, it's likely that the Hope Diamond's value has changed as a result of things like market trends, historical occurrences, and evolving appraisal methodologies.

How Is The Value Of The Hope Diamond Determined?

The valuation of the Hope Diamond considers various factors, including its carat weight, cut, color, clarity, historical provenance, and overall uniqueness.

Are There Any Recent Estimates On The Market Value Of The Hope Diamond?

Recent estimates of the Hope Diamond's market value may exist, but variations in assessments and auction outcomes make it challenging to provide a precise figure.

What Factors Contribute To The Fluctuation In The Hope Diamond's Appraised Value?

Market demand, modifications to gemstone valuation standards, and changes in the perception of historical and cultural significance can all have an impact on the Hope Diamond's appraised value.

Final Words

How much is the Hope Diamond worth? Famous all across the globe, the Hope diamond is a 45.52 carat valuable gem. Only a select few have shown interest in purchasing this ill-fated treasure, despite its current valuation of $350 million, due to its shadowy past.

When exposed to ultraviolet light, diamonds display a stunning red phosphorescence, a characteristic of their unusual and powerful luminescence type. An ancient cushion cut and a single faceted girdle give them their distinctive look.

The Hope diamond, which has gone by more than a few names, is notoriously cursed because of its turbulent past.

Although the Hope diamond is fictional, it served as inspiration for the Titanic's Heart of the Ocean. It was the family that possessed the diamond from 1824 till its name was given to it.

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