Hope Diamond

 


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Description of the Hope Diamond
The Hope Diamond is one of the most famous diamonds in the world. It is currently housed in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in the USA. The Hope Diamond weighs 45.52 carats is graded as VS1, is Dark blue in color. The Size of the Hope Diamond is 21.78 mm wide, 25.60 mm long and 12.00 mm deep.

Origin of the name of the Hope Diamond
The Hope originated from India in Golconda where it was mined at the at the Kollur mine. The famous Hope diamond was first known as the "French Blue" or the "Tavernier Blue" as it was acquired by Jean-Baptiste Tavernier (1605 – 1689), the French traveller and pioneer of jewelry and diamond trade with India. The French Blue was then passed from one ruling French King to the next until the French Revolution when it was stolen. What happened next was a bit of a mystery but in 1839 an entry of a fabulous blue diamond was entered in the gem collection catalog of Henry Philip Hope, the man from whom the diamond now takes its name. The gem catalog did not reveal where or from who Henry Philip Hope acquired the diamond or how much he paid for it. It was said that "Bad luck and death not only for the owner of the diamond but for all who touched it." Possession of the Hope diamond led to violent deaths, disaster and debt leading to stories, myths and legends of the Curse of the Hope Diamond...

The Curse of the Hope Diamond
The Curse of Hope Diamond dates back to its Indian heritage. The great blue diamond was said to have been stolen from the Forehead of an Idol. According to the legend the diamond was stolen from a statue of the Hindu goddess Sita. The Hindu Priests were incensed and placed a curse on whoever owned the diamond. The Curse of the Hope Diamond foretells :

 "Bad luck and death not only for the owner of the diamond but for all who touched it. "

The legend does not state who stole the diamond but it was definitely acquired by Jean-Baptiste Tavernier who first took the diamond from India to Europe.

 

  • The curse of the Hope Diamond is said to have first inflicted a terrible death on Tavernier who died of a fever and whose body was then torn apart by wolves ( not substantiated)
  • The diamond was sold to King Louis XIV of France. Louis XIV died on September 1, 1715 of gangrene but almost all of his legitimate children and grandchildren died. His five-year-old great-grandson succeeded him to reign as Louis XV of France
  • Louis XV was a weak and dissolute King. One of his mistresses was the Comtesse Du Barry who was beheaded during the French Revolution
  • The next King was Louis XVI. Both he and his wife Marie Antoinette were beheaded during the French Revolution
  • The diamond passed to the English King George IV who left considerable debts
  • The Hope Family ended up selling the diamond because of debts
  • The American Evalyn Walsh McLean owned the Hope Diamond and her life was best by tragedies and after her death the Hope Diamond once again had to be sold to settle debts

The history and lives of the owners of the Hope diamond were filled with tragedy and many of their lives culminated in vast debts. Whether or not people believe in the Curse of the Hope Diamond, the history of the stone is undeniable - and the threat of the Hope curse is enough to make people cautious. The History Timeline details the story of the Hope diamond.

History of the Hope Diamond
Myths and legends surround the stone. It is of incredible value. The Hope Diamond originated from India in Golconda where it was mined at the at the Kollur mine. The first mention we have of a Blue Diamond in Europe refers to a stone then considered unique. It weighed in the rough 112 carats, was acquired in 1642 by Jean-Baptiste Tavernier (1605 – 1689), the French traveller and pioneer of jewelry and diamond trade. The magnificent blue diamond was sold to King Louis XIV of France in 1668. It was described as "d'un beau violet" meaning a "beautiful violet" which was brilliant in clarity and rare in color.

The French King had the dark blue diamond cut into a triangular shape weighing 67 carats and wore it suspended from a light blue ribbon round his neck as a pendant. It became part of the French regalia, or Crown Jewels. After passing to French Kings it was stolen during the French Revolution and re-emerged re-cut and sold to various owners. The weight of the diamond had dropped to 45 carats and it is believed that a piece of the original diamond was made into the "Blue Drop Diamond " which was owned by the the Duke of Brunswick.  The Hope Diamond is currently housed in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in the USA. The lives and the greed of many of the owners and wearers of the produced many stories of ill-luck that plagued them and became part of the history of the Hope diamond.

The History Timeline of the Hope Diamond
The following timeline & history of the Hope details important historical events and dates:

Dates in History of the Hope Timeline & History of Hope Diamond
  The diamond originated from the Kollur mine, Golconda in India and was believed to have adorned the Forehead of an Idol in a statue of the Hindu goddess Sita. 
1642

In 1642 the diamond was acquired by Jean-Baptiste Tavernier (1605 – 1689), the French traveller and pioneer of jewelry and diamond trade. The legend surrounding the diamond accuses Tavernier of stealing the diamond

1668 The magnificent blue diamond was sold to King Louis XIV of France in 1668 - "Le Roi Soleil" or the "Sun King"
1673 In 1673 the blue diamond was cut to 67 carats by the court jeweler of King Louis XIV, Sieur Pitau, and it became known as the "French Blue"

1715 The French Blue figured in a grand historic scene on the February 1715, when the Persian Ambassador appeared before King Louis XIV in Paris
1749 In 1749 King Louis XV ordered his court jeweler, Andre Jacquemin, to reset the French Blue into a piece of ceremonial jewelry
1792 - August

This diamond was, with the rest of the French regalia, seized in August, 1792, and deposited in the Garde-Meuble (Royal Treasury) during the French Revolution

1792 - September

In September the Crown Jewels, including the French Blue Diamond  were stolen when the Garde Meuble (Royal Treasury) was stormed by rioters. What ultimately became of it remains a bit of a mystery.

1812 In 1812 John Françillion wrote a memo documenting the presence in London of a a Blue Brilliant diamond was in the hands of Mr. Daniel Eliason, a London diamond merchant, which was believed to be the French Blue Diamond. It came to light without a history, without any account being rendered as to where it came from or what had been its travels and fortunes.
1812 An illustrated perspectus for the sale of the diamond is found, signed by the Daniel Eliason. It would appear that the diamond is purchased by the King of England
1822 In 1822 Sir Thomas Lawrence painted a portrait of King George IV of England in which the King is wearing the insignia of the Royal Order of the Golden Fleece set with a large blue stone, believed to be the French Blue
1830

In 1830 King George IV died and the 'French Blue' was sold to pay off his great debts

1839

In 1839 an entry of a fabulous blue diamond was entered in the gem collection catalog of the newly deceased Henry Philip Hope, the man from whom the diamond now takes its name. The gem catalog did not reveal where or from who Henry Philip Hope acquired the diamond or how much he paid for it.

1839

The diamond passed to his nephew Henry Thomas Hope and then to the nephew's grandson Lord Francis Hope.

1894 Lord Francis Hope married his mistress, an American actress called May Yohe. But she left him for a man called Putnam Strong
1901

In 1901 Lord Francis Hope sold the Hope Diamond to help pay off his debts.

1901

It was sold to a London dealer who quickly sold it to Joseph Frankels and Sons of New York City and the Hope Diamond was moved from Europe to the US

1909

Joseph Frankels and Sons also fell into debt and the Hope diamond was next sold to Selim Habib

1909

Selim Habib who put the Hope Diamond up for auction in Paris in 1909. It did not sell at the auction

1909 The first stories about the Curse of the Hope Diamond  were documented in the June 25 issue of The Times in which an article detailed the stories of previous owners whose lives had been cursed through the ownership of the Hope Diamond
1909 The Hope Diamond sold soon after to C.H. Rosenau and then resold to Pierre Cartier who had the Hope diamond reset andhe Hope diamond was set in a pendant of 16 white diamonds, both pear-shapes and cushion cuts.
1911

In 1911 the Hope diamond was sold to Mrs. Evalyn Walsh McLean. Evalyn Mc Lean was the wife of Edward (Ned) McLean who was heir to the Washington Post newspaper fortune. 

1912 A bail was then soldered to the Hope diamond pendant on which Evalyn McLean would attach other diamonds including the McLean diamond and the Star of the East. The chain of the necklace contained 45 white diamonds
1911 - 1947 Terrible tragedies struck her family including the death of her first born son, Vinson, in a car crash when he was only nine. Her daughter committed suicide at age 25. In 1941 Evalyn McLean's husband was declared insane and confined to a mental institution until his death
1921 In 1921 May Yohe hired Henry Leyford Gates to help her write The Mystery of the Hope Diamond. May Yohe persuaded film producer George Kleine to back a movie called 'The Hope Diamond Mystery' based on the book. She starred as Lady Francis Hope - the movie flopped
1947

Evalyn McLean died

1949

Against the dying wishes of Evalyn McLean her jewelry was put on sale in 1949 in order to settle the debts from her estate, instead of going to her grandchildren

1949

The Hope Diamond was purchased by Harry Winston Inc. of New York City

1949 - 1953

The Hope was shown as the central attraction of their Court of Jewels exhibition from 1949 - 1953

1953 - 1958

The Hope diamond was shown at many exhibits and charitable events all over the world by Harry Winston Inc.

1958

On November 10, 1958 Harry Winston Inc. donated the Hope diamond to the Smithsonian Institution occasionally show the Hope at exhibits and charitable events all over the world

   
 

History Timeline of the Hope
The above history timeline of the Hope diamond details important historical events and dates and the legends and myths that surround the curse of the Hope. The tragic lives of some of the owners give some credence to the Curse of the Hope :

"Bad luck and death not only for the owner of the diamond but for all who touched it. "

The Hope Diamond
The following timeline & history of the Hope details important historical events and dates. Fascinating information about the history of the Hope stone providing comprehensive facts, information and timeline about the history of the infamous Hope.

   
 

Famous - Precious - Curse - Stone - Guide - Timeline Hope - Facts - Information -Info
History  - Curse - Timeline & History Hope - History of the Hope

Hope Diamond

 

Information about the famous Hope Diamond

Discover some fascinating information about the famous Hope Diamond

  • Timeline & History of the Hope
  • Facts and Information about the Hope Diamond
  • Facts, History, Timeline and Information about the Hope
  • History Timeline of the Hope Diamond
  • The Hope - one of the World's most famous diamonds
  • The Curse of the fabulous Hope Diamond
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  • One of the World's most famous diamonds the Hope
 
 

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