The Mystery of the Hope Diamond

Still, he is in the Washington’s Smithsonian Institute and can be admired by countless visitors as he was never anywhere else. But the hope diamond, by which we know today that it was created from the in the turmoil of the French Revolution of disappeared “French blue”, has an eventful history behind it. Because for centuries it was considered cursed piece of jewelry that brings certain death its owners.

The story of the stone, the since 1839 the hope diamond is called, began with the French merchant Jean Baptiste Tavernier. This 1640 acquired the original 112 k heavy stone on a trip to India. Supposedly he should be has been stolen from a temple statue of the Indian deity SITA, and since then a curse on him is.

Tavernier brought the diamonds to Europe and sold it in 1668 to King Louis XIV., the Sun King. This left drag him to a 67 Carat jewelry piece. In gold and suspended on a neck Ribbon of the King carried him to official occasions, which is why he the name “French Blue” or “Le Bleu de France” received. Louis XIV to the stone but have brought nothing but bad luck, but in his time in Office, he lost a large part of the French territories. His successor Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette, who often wore the diamond, fared even worse, because they were beheaded during the French Revolution. In the subsequent plundering of the Royal Treasury, the French Blue disappeared.

Until 1830 the stone reappeared in history, was offered a rough Blue Diamond for sale in England. That it was the French Blue was still unclear. Henry Philip Hope purchased it for around 18,000 pounds, and in 1839, he appeared as “hope diamond” for the first time in a catalog of the hope collection. Hope died in the same year, and his three nephews fought for 10 years in court to his heritage, which was then divided. To avoid bankruptcy, the heir sold the stone to the Russian Prince Kanitowski, who gave it to his mistress. Due to infidelity, he shot them however a little later and also the Prince himself was murdered. The diamond was also the next owner, Sultan Abdul-Hamid II, no luck, because only shortly after acquiring the Turkish revolution broke out, during which time was his wife murdered and sent the Sultan into exile.

in 1910 the Hope Diamond passed then owned by Evalyn Walsh McLean, who own called him 30 years. She wore it as a diamond necklace pendant, as we know it today. This piece should be also the template for the “heart of the ocean” from the blockbuster Titanic, even though the Hope Diamond was never on the Titanic.

New York jeweler Harry Winston, the McLeans entire collection bought, donated the hope diamond finally at the Smithsonian Institute, where the blue giant has become one of the most popular tourist attractions. The curse of the Hope diamond seems since then broken and yet still the magical aura of an eventful history surrounds the stone.