Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: Wallis Simpson's Cartier Panther
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Black Prince's Ruby
The History of the Kashmir Sapphire
The Kashmir sapphire is renowned for its opulent history and powerful symbolism throughout the world. India's notoriety as the hotspot for the most decadent gemstones prevails throughout the world of jewelry. Beryls, pearls, rubies, and rose-cut diamonds lapped in 18-karat gold swirls, embellish their jewelry markets.
Brazil, Thailand, Burma, Australia, Vietnam, Montana, Africa, and Ceylon are ripe with prized sapphire mines too.
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.
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: Koh-i-Noor Diamond
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Amber Room
In 1716, Prussia gave Peter the Great of Russia an extravagant gift honoring the peace between their nations - an entire room made of amber and encrusted with beaded jewelry. The panels were backed with gold leaf, which made the entire room glow with a topaz-like warmth.
The gorgeous Amber Room, made of real amber and beaded jewelry, glows like citrine or topaz. Image from Imaging-and-Art.com.
It was called the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Historians estimate that today it would be worth $146 million.
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Hope Diamond
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Flame Queen Opal
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Hortensia Diamond
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Orlov Diamond
Though it’s said to have come from India, like so many rare beaded jewelry pieces and gems, the Orlov Diamond’s story really takes place in Imperial Russia.
In the 18th century, Grigory Orlov was quite the ladies’ man. He wasn’t of noble birth, or particularly well educated, but he was strong, handsome, and rich enough to give women expensive beaded jewelry whenever he liked. There came a time, however, when his eye fell on the wrong woman.
Famous Gems and Beaded Jewelry: The Bahia Emerald
The story of the Bahia Emerald isn’t one of women flaunting dazzling beaded jewelry, but of Las Vegas heists and near blood baths in the desert. It is the largest emerald stone ever found, and the single largest emerald crystal ever discovered in embedded in rock. It weighs 840 pounds. That’s about 1,900,000 carats. It’s worth about $400 million. Chump change, right?
After it was found in Brazil, it exchanged hands several times between gem and beaded jewelry custodians, until it wound up stored in New Orleans—at exactly the wrong time.