They shine, they sparkle and they emanate glow – they’re gorgeous and they’re very famous. We’re talking about the world’s most renowned sapphires, rubies, diamonds, and pearls. From radiant pearls to sparkly diamonds, here are the 7 gems that have worldwide recognition.
- The Dresden Green Diamond
There’s nothing that tops a twinkling diamond and this piece has it all: the carats, the glam, and the notoriety. Meet the Dresden Green, which is known as the largest natural green diamond in the world. At no less than 41 carats, this sapphire-like beauty that was once owned by Friedrich Augustus I of Saxony currently resides in the Dresden Castle in Germany.
- The Blue Hope Diamond
This next gem is another colored piece that carries a rich, drama-filled history. The Blue Hope Diamond has crossed countries and has been in the possession of royalty – all due to its striking beauty and immense value. The gem belonged to the French royal family until it was cut from The Blue Diamond of the Crown of France during the French Revolution in 1792. Its impressive stats: the stunning azure piece is about the size of a walnut, measuring 25 mm in width and weighing 45.52 carats.
- The Moussaieff Red Diamond
While it might not come with a complicated history or royal background, the Moussaieff is the world’s largest red diamond, according to the Gemological Institute of America. Discovered relatively recently (in the 1990s) by a Brazilian farmer in a river in the Alto Paranaiba region, the impressive gem weighs 13.9 carats (2.78 g) and it’s shaped like a triangle.
- The Millennium Sapphire
As an ode to the genius minds of past generations, the 61,500-carat Millennium Sapphire features the faces of Albert Einstein, Beethoven, Michelangelo, and Shakespeare, masterfully carved by Italian artist Alessio Boschi. Valued at an impressive $180 million, the gem was discovered in Madagascar in 1995. The carving process took no less than 2 years, during which the now football-sized sapphire lost a third of its mass.
- La Peregrina Pearl
Known as the most famous pearl in history, La Peregrina comes with an interesting story – one that includes not only royals, but Hollywood royalty as well. Back in the 1960s, the extra-large pearl was purchased by actor Richard Burton, who later gifted it to Elizabeth Taylor. The actress misplaced the famous pearl in a hotel – and later managed to find it in her dog’s mouth.
- The Duchess of Cambridge’s Sapphire
Few gemstones get as much time in the media as this next one on our list does The Duchess of Cambridge’s blue sapphire, which is part of her engagement ring. Previously owned by William’s mother Diana, the stunning gem measures 12 carats and is surrounded by diamonds on a white gold setting.
- The Black Prince’s Ruby
Perhaps one of the more infamous gems on our list: the Black Prince’s Ruby, which is less of ruby and more of a spinel. There’s lots of drama and even murder behind this famous jewel: back in the 14th century, Don Pedro de Cruel murdered the Moorish Prince of Granada, took the red stone, and later gave it to the Black Prince, son of Edward III of England in return of a favor. While not quite as valuable as a ruby, the red spinel still impresses with its size which is similar to that of a chicken egg.
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