Sensational Sparklers

Shutterstock / Sofia Zhuravetc © Woman wearing sparkling jewellery Pic: Shutterstock

We know how much you enjoy reading our collections of fascinating facts both in My Weekly and My Weekly Special. This time, polish up your precious stone knowledge with these incredible details – and there’s more in this month’s issue of My Weekly Special, on sale Nov 17!

10 Fascinating Facts on Jewels

1. The word jewel derives from the old French word “juoel”, which translates directly as a plaything or toy.

2. After purchasing a 24.78-carat pink diamond in 2010, Laurence Graff of the renowned British jewellery house, had the diamond reshaped and removed 20 natural flaws before renaming it The Graff Pink. The stone is now the most flawless pink diamond in the world, with vivid colour, no internal flaws, and weighing in at 23.88 carats.

3. In 1966, Harry Winston purchased a rough diamond of 241 carats, which was cut into a pear-shaped, nearly 70-carat and flawless diamond. Eventually, this iconic stone was purchased by Richard Burton as a gift for Elizabeth Taylor, and the stone was renamed the Taylor-Burton Diamond.

4. The Marie-Louise Diadem was a wedding gift from Napoleon to his bride Empress Marie-Louise. The original emeralds set in the diadem were replaced with 79 Persian turquoise stones in the 1950s so that Van Cleef & Arpels could sell the emeralds in individual pieces of jewellery. The company later donated the diadem, with its original 1,006 mine-cut diamonds, to the Smithsonian.

5. Grace Kelly’s engagement ring marked the beginning of her transformation from Hollywood starlet to royalty. Princess Grace wore her 10.47-carat engagement ring everywhere, even in the film High Society, and its film appearance made it one of the most famous rings in the world – today worth over $4million.

6. The Cora Sun-Drop Diamond, a 110.3-carat pear-shaped yellow diamond, originated in South Africa and was unearthed in 2010, and broke records for being the most expensive yellow diamond ever sold when it brought $12.4 million at a Sotheby’s auction.

7. The iconic yellow Tiffany Diamond is synonymous with the house of Tiffany & Co. It was mined in 1877 from the Kimberley mines in South Africa at nearly 288 carats. In 1878, Charles Lewis Tiffany purchased it and had it cut to its current 128.54 carats. In 2012, the stone was reset into a necklace accented by white diamonds in celebration of Tiffany’s 175th anniversary, and it is now on permanent display in the brand’s Fifth Avenue flagship store in New York City.

8. Believed to be the reason behind the deaths of two Russian princesses and a New York diamond dealer, the Black Orlov Diamond is 67.5 carats and was discovered in the early 19th century in India. After Princesses Leonila Galitsine-Bariatinsky and Nadia Vygin-Orlov both jumped to their demises, diamond dealer J W Paris attempted to break the spell by cutting the stone into three pieces, but he was unsuccessful – and also later committed suicide.

9. The Von Donnersmarck Tiara has a total of 500 carats of gemstones and was gifted to Katharina by her husband, Guido Henckel von Donnersmarck, a member of a noble German family and the second wealthiest in the country by the end of the 19th century. The stunning headpiece boasts some of the world’s rarest emeralds that first belonged to Empress Eugénie of France.

10. Thought to be one of the crown jewels of India’s Maharajah of Jodhpur, the Star of Asia was found at the ancient Mogok mines in Burma, considered to be one of the world’s finest star sapphires at 330 carats. A unique characteristic is the six-rayed star at the centre of the cut sapphire, currently on display at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

For more bling-tastic facts, pick up this week’s issue of My Weekly Special, on sale from Nov 17. Also, don’t miss a fantastic spread of cheesy buffet recipes, plus we catch up with Strictly sensation Anton Du Beke. On sale now!

My Weekly Special 94 cover