The hitherto unknown diamond, The Farnese Blue, emerges in the auction market
March 28, 2018: One of the foremost historic diamonds – The Farnese Blue – will appear in the auction market for the first time in history, after having remained in the same family for over three centuries. Given to Elisabeth Farnese, Queen of Spain (1692-1766), the legendary diamond has subsequently passed down through four of the most important royal families in Europe: Spain, France, Italy and Austria.
Witness to 300 years of European history, from the aftermath of the Spanish succession War to the fall of the Habsburg Empire, the diamond has travelled across the continent for centuries. And all this time, it was kept secretly in a royal casket. Excepting close relatives, and family jewellers, no one knew of its existence. It is said that it was a part of the diadem worn by the last queen of France, Marie-Antoinette herself.
The 6.16-carat pear shaped blue diamond will be offered in Sotheby’s sale of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva on May 15, 2018 with an estimate of CHF 3.5 - 5 million (US$ 3.7 - 5.3 million).
Like the famous Hope and Wittelsbach diamonds, the Farnese Blue was found in the famed Golconda mines of India, which was the sole source of diamonds until the discoveries in Brazil in the 1720s.