Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Sancy Diamond
Here it is! There it is! Who has it now?
Keeping up with the 52-carat Sancy Diamond was like playing a game of hide and seek. Probably of all the Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Sancy Diamond has passed through more hands and disappeared more often than any other gem.
Experts even debate the diamond's origins, although its unusual shape leads them to believe it came from a mine in India. Its whereabouts until the 16th century continue to confuse. One story says the original owner Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, lost the gem in a 1477 battle. At his death, it went either to a royal cousin in Portugal or to his conqueror the Duke of Lorraine of France. From there it drops out of history again.
The next question asks if one of the two men mentioned above sold it to Nicolas de Harley, Seigneur de Sancy in the mid-1500s or did he buy it while he was in Turkey? What is certain is that the stone was named after Seigneur de Sancy, a late 16th century French Ambassador to Turkey.
The diamond had some adventures under Sancy's care. It adorned the cap of the bald-headed French King Henry III. It disappeared again during the reign of Henry IV and feared stolen. Some fancy Sancy detective work found the gem in the body of his loyal servant who swallowed it to keep it safe.
Next, history says Sancy sold the diamond either to Elizabeth I or to James I of England. Records of the Crown Jewels in 1605 reveal its purchase. James set it with other gems in an elaborate hat pin, so the jewel sat on another royal head.
During the next several decades of the English Civil War and the French Revolution, the diamond was lost, found and lost again. It appears to have traveled to France, Russia, India and back to France again. Finally, in 1906, William Wallace Astor bought it. It remained in the Astor family for 72 years until the Louvre purchased it in 1978 for $1,000,000. Since that time, it continues to fascinate viewers with its lovely pale yellow color and shield-shaped cut.
The Sancy Diamond might have been lost a lot, but fortunately you don't have to search for your perfect gem. We make all of our beautiful jewelry by hand and would be happy to make something just for you. Contact us soon.