Named after the 14-year old Prince of Baroda, the April 16 Christie’s Magnificent Jewels sale of this Golconda diamond set new world records. It became the most valuable diamond ever sold…both at the auction house and in the United States.
The Princie diamond was described by serious jewelry aficionados as having ideal qualities. It boasts of an aristocratic history, has an outstanding pink color, is sizable, and possesses a beautiful polish, shape, and quality. The diamond has a near flawless cushion-cut and weighs 34.65 carat. It ended up with an anonymous bidder for the whopping price of $39.9 million…in other words, the buyer ended up paying around $1.1 million per carat.
The diamond can be traced back to ancient south central India mines. Its very first owner was said to be the royal family of the Mughal empire. The Princie was first sold in 1960 by a member of the royal family of Hyderabad to Van Cleef & Arpels, and got its new name during a party at the store’s Paris branch where the young Baroda prince was in attendance.
The recent sale was the first time in nearly half a century that the Princie became available for bidding. Prior to this record-breaking New York auction, Christie’s biggest sale was at the tail-end of 2008, when the Wittelsbach Diamond was sold for $24.3 million. The famous auction house is also known for the successful sale of Elizabeth Taylor’s impressive jewelry collection.