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Thursday, December 16, 2010

An Embrace for the Hope Diamond

If you have at least a little interest in diamonds you should have heard about one of the most renowned of them – the Hope Diamond. This is a large (45.52 carats) fancy deep greyish-blue diamond, which is currently a precious property of the Smithsonian National History Museum in Washington.

This gem is known not only for its rare blue color and large size, but for its legendary history and honorable owners. King Louise XV, Marie Antoinette and her husband King Louis XVI, King Georg IV and other nobles were the royal proprietors of the Hope Diamond. Overall, the diamond passed through many hands till it was purchased by Mr. Winston, an outstanding American jeweler. After being an owner of the Hope Diamond for a decade, Harry Winston donated a rare blue gem to the aforementioned museum. Since then it attracts millions of visitors every year seeking to enjoy its beauty and rarity.

Until this year the Hope diamond remained in its, so to say, traditional setting, the one it was donated to the museum – a pendant surrounded by a number of little white diamonds. However, for the whole period of its history this diamond regularly changed the settings, being preferably a part of a crown jewel. But this year it got a new 'embrace' setting in honor of the 50th Anniversary of Harry Winston's donation.

The jaw-dropping necklace with the Hope Diamond inside made public on November 18, 2010. The setting for “Embracing Hope” was designed and handcrafted in the Harry Winston studio by eight professional jewelers, who spent more than 1000 to produce this masterpiece. The necklace is a sculptural diamond ribbon featuring 340 baguette white diamonds set in platinum. The Hope Diamond is suspended in 'embrace' resembling a gem being held in the palms. Actually, there were three other designs of the necklace but this one was selected by popular vote in online polling a year before.

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