Such mystique surrounds diamonds, that the largest have been given names. Some historic diamonds include:
The Hope Diamond:
Cut from a 132.5 carat gem, this 45.52 carat blue cushion is now on display at the Smithsonian Institution and is known for its famous curse. Most of those who owned it died in revolutions, suffered scandal, or met with financial ruin.
The two largest gem diamonds in existence were cut from the same huge rough stone, a 3,106 carat diamond weighing IVi pounds and measuring 2 x 2 % x 4 inches. It was discovered in 1705 in a South African mine and was presented to King Edward VII of England. The stone was cut to form Cullinan 1. A second cleavage produced the 317.4 carat Cullinan II, now mounted in the British Crown, plus 116 other gems.
This 69.42 carat pear was cut from a 240.8 carat rough found in 1966. It was sold at auction to Cartier of New York for $1,050,000 and purchased the next day by actor Richard Burton for his wife, at the time, actress Elizabeth Taylor.
This 140.5 carat cushion brilliant, now on display in the Louvre, was once one of the French crown jewels. It graced the hat of Marie Antoinette and later the hilt of Napoleon's sword.
Most famous of the world's lost diamonds is this 137.27 carat yellow, whose history dates from the 15th Century. After a succession of owners, it became a part of the Austrian crown jewel collection. The gem disappeared during World War I when the Austrian imperial family was forced into Swiss exile.