Monday, March 1, 2010


The Hope Diamond weighs in at 45.52 carats and is a flawless and rare blue diamond.  This necklace has been passed down from generation to generation starting with Jean Baptiste Tavernier, who was a French merchant traveller.  

Jean sold it to King Louis XIV in France in 1688, and the Hope Diamond was stolen and in 1812 it ended up with a diamond merchant Daniel Eliason.  

Then of course the man who the diamond takes its name was the next owner.  He goes by the name Henry Phillip Hope.  After his death in 1839, he passed it to his nephew Henry Thomas Hope and then ultimately to the nephew's grandson Lord Francis Hope.  He sold it to a merchant because he needed to pay off his debts, and the dealer quickly sold it to Joseph Frankels and Sons of New York City until they needed cash.  

The next owner was Selim Habib, who sold it in a auction in Paris in 1909.  Although it did not sell at the auction it was soon bought by C.H. Rosenau and then resold to Pierre Cartier that same year.  

In 1911 it was sold to Mrs. Evalyn Walsh McLean in 1911.  The Hope diamond stuck with her until she passed away.  Harry Winston Inc. of New York City purchased Evalyn's entire jewelry collection in 1949.  On November 10, 1958 they donated the Hope Diamond to the Smithsonian Institution. 

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