Two highlights from Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale in Geneva on 15 May will be a pair of highly impressive white diamonds, each weighing over 50 carats. Both of the diamonds have Flawless clarity, are D-Colour – the most coveted hue for white diamonds – and belong to the highly rarefied sub-category of Type IIa diamonds, which make up just 2% of gem diamonds and boast the highest optical transparency. The first is a 51.71-carat round, brilliant cut diamond, and the second, similarly perfect, weighs 50.39 carats but is oval. They are both the second largest D Flawless diamond of their shape ever to have come to auction.
When it comes to stones of significant size, diamond cutters will generally try to keep the maximum weight from the rough. For this reason, elongated cushions, emerald-cuts, and pear-shapes are usually more common for large diamonds. Here, however, the master craftsmen who cut the stones have chosen round brilliant and oval cuts respectively, which show off the diamonds’ exceptional physical characteristics to maximum effect.
Earlier this year, Sotheby’s Diamonds, a retail boutique specialising in the world’s finest diamonds, unveiled an extraordinarily rare 102.34 carat, white diamond of the same extraordinary colour and clarity as these two spectacular stones. The only known round brilliant-cut diamond over 100 carats that is perfect according to every critical criterion, the stone has now found a buyer. While the identity of the new owner cannot be revealed, the stone was purchased for a price per carat, which far exceeds that for any colourless diamond sold at auction.
102.34 CARAT ROUND BRILLIANT-CUT D COLOUR, FLAWLESS DIAMOND
Speaking about the sale of the 102.34 carat diamond, Patti Wong, Founder and Chairman of Sotheby’s Diamonds, said: “When the new custodian of this stone first beheld it, they were – like everyone else who has seen it – completely captivated. It is hard to believe that something so ancient (these stones are as old as the earth itself) can be so alive, so full of fire and blinding brilliance. A rarity in the mythical world of 100-carat stones, this diamond is a wonder of nature and of man’s ability to shape nature’s creations into an object of ultimate beauty”
Looking ahead to the Geneva sale, David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewellery Division, commented, “Having witnessed the enormous effect of the 102.34 carat stone on those who saw it, we are now thrilled to bring to the market two more truly exceptional stones, both of which are among the largest, highest quality white diamonds ever to come to auction. Diamonds like these have always captivated collectors and connoisseurs alike and continue to do so today.”