Posts by Maryjewel

    Lot 8 - An Emerald and Diamond Flower Bracelet - though not a signed piece, registered a reasonable impact at the auctions, assigned a moderately high pre-sale estimate of US$13,579 - $18,106 and selling slightly above the upper estimate for US$18,198. What are the possible reasons for its moderate showing despite the piece being unsigned ?

    Frankly speaking Joan your choice seems to be in perfect order. Schlumberger's ruby, diamond and gold pineapple brooch is indeed fantastic. The pineapple appears to be carved out of a single large crystal of ruby and is topped by another cabochon-cut ruby. I would like to know whether such large crystals of ruby do actually occur in nature.

    Some Burma sapphire lots that appeared at Christie's New York Rockefeller Plaza Magnificent Jewels Sale held on October 16, 2007 are lots 120, 191, 231 and 249.


    Lot 120, A Sapphire Platinum Ring, was bezel-set with a pyramidal cabochon Burma blue sapphire. The weight of the sapphire is not given, probably because of the difficulty in dismantling the sapphire without damaging the setting. AGL certified the Burma origin of the sapphire without any heat enhancement. The sapphire ring sold for a moderate US$25,000.


    Lot 191, A Sapphire And Diamond Ring was claw-set with a 14.89-carat, cushion-cut, Burma blue sapphire, flanked on either side by a half-moon cut diamond, mounted in platinum. AGTA certified the Burma origin of the blue sapphire with no evidence of heat enhancement. The lot sold above the presale estimate of US$100,000 - $150,000 for US$169,000 giving a price-per-carat value of US$11,350.


    Lot 231 was A Pair of Sapphire and Colored DIamond Flower Ear Clips designed by Carvin French. The centerpiece of each flower brooch is a cushion-cut Burma sapphire weighing 9.37 carats and 10.10 carats. The five 18k yellow-gold petals of each flower brooch is pavé-set with several circular-cut yellow diamonds. AGTA cetified the Burma origin of the blue sapphires with no indications of heat enhancement. The lot sold for US$181,000 between the presale estimate of US$150,000 - $200,000. The price-per-carat works out to US$9,296


    Lot 249 was An Antique Sapphire and Diamond Brooch designed around year 1880. The centerpiece of the brooch was an octagonal-cut Burma sapphire, highlighted by a two-layered white diamond surround. The inner layer consists of 16 old European and old-mine cut white diamonds. The outer layer also consists of 16 diamonds, 8 large pear-shaped diamonds and 8 small circular-cut diamonds, mounted alternately on silver and gold. AGTA certified the Burma origin of the blue sapphire with no indications of heating. The weights of the blue sapphire and diamonds are not given, due to the difficulty of dismantling the gemstones without damaging the antique setting. Despite this the lot sold for a respectable US$193,000 between the estimated range of US$150,000 - $200,000.

    The normal alexandrite lot 1524, that appeared at Christie's Jewels : The Hong Kong Sale, held on May 26, 2009 was an Alexandrite and DIamond Platinum Ring, designed as a flower, centering upon a heart-shaped alexandrite weighing 2.16 carats. The four petals of the flower are pave-set with smaller alexandrites and the hoop of the ring mounted with diamonds. A lab report by GGL certified the natural Brazilian origin of the 2.16-carat alexandrite with its pronounced color change from bluish-green in daylight to purple in incandescent light. The lot sold for a moderate price of US$27,543 within the presale estimate of US$19,442-$32,403. The ppc value of the stone works out to US$12,751.

    Two catseye alexandrite lots and a third normal alexandrite lot appeared at Christie's Jewels : The Hong Kong Sale held on May 26, 2009. The catseye alexandrite lots are Lot 1523 and Lot 1525. The normal alexandrite lot is Lot 1524.

    Lot 1523 is a Catseye Alexandrite and Diamond Ring. The ring of floral design is set with a 6.32-carat, oval-shaped, Brazilian catseye alexandrite as centerpiece, within a rose-cut alexandrite surround, and a brilliant-cut diamond trim, mounted in platinum. A GGL report accompanying the lot certified the Brazilian origin of the alexandrite, with a pronounced color change from green in daylight to reddish-purple in incandescent light and a distinct and well-centered chatoyancy. A pre-sale estimate of US$36,292 - $49,253 was placed on the lot, which sold above the upper estimate for US$61,568. The ppc value of the stone works out to US$9,742.


    Lot 1525 is an interesting Catseye Alexandrite and Diamond Necklace, designed as a line of graduated oval-shaped catseye alexandrites, consisting of 20 large oval-shaped catseye alexandrites, alternating with 20 small round catseye alexandrites, spaced by three round brilliant-cut diamonds between a large and small alexandrite. The gemstones are mounted in platinum and the length of the necklace is 42.0 cm. The total weight of the 40 catseye alexandrites is 22.69 carats. The image of the catseye alexandrite necklace is apparently taken in daylight, and hence all the alexandrites appear dark green. Interestingly, every alexandrite in the necklace shows a very prominent chatoyancy. Unfortunately, the neckalce was not accompanied by a lab report from a recognized gemological laboratory, certifying the natural status of the alexandrites and specifying the country-of-origin of the stones. This explains the relatively low price of US$40,505 realized by the necklace, within the pre-sale estimate of US$32,403 - $45,365. The ppc-value of the alexandrites also work out to a ridiculously low price of US$1,785.

    Another 18.23-carat, cushion-cut alexandrite of Ceylon/Sri Lanka origin mounted on a platinum ring and flanked on either side by a triangular-cut diamond, appeared at Christie's New York Magnificent Jewels Sale, held on October 15, 2013. The alexandrite was certified by AGL as of classic Ceylon/Sri Lanka origin, which also attested to its rarity and superior color-change effect. A pre-sale estimate of US$400,000-600,000 was placed on this alexandrite ring, which was sold within the estimate for US$557,000 equivalent to US$30,554 per carat.

    The other lot containing Kashmir blue sapphires that did extremely well at the same Sotheby's auction was Lot No. 371, titled THE RICHELIEU SAPPHIRES, A PAIR OF RARE AND MAGNIFICENT SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND EARRINGS. Each of the earrings is set with a cushion-cut Kashmir blue sapphire one weighing 26.66 carats and the other 20.88 carats, suspended from a star surmount set with a cushion- and pear-shaped diamonds. A pre-sale estimate of USD 2,506,793 - 4,577,622 was placed on the pair of earrings, from the Collection of Odile de Richelieu, Countess Gabriel de La Rochefoucauld, Princess de La Rochefoucauld (1879-1974). The lot is accompanied by reports from SSEF and GGL stating that the sapphires are of Kashmir origin, with no indications of heating. A note accompanying the SSEF report is very informative and interesting :- "The two gemstones form a perfectly matching pair in size and shape, combined with an attractive velvety blue colour and a fine purity. The inclusions found by microscopic inspection represent the hallmarks of sapphires from the reputed historic deposit in Kashmir, located in a remote part of the Himalayan Mountains in India. The velvety blue of these sapphires is due to very fine and subtle inclusions and a combination of well-balanced trace elements in these gemstones, typical and characteristic for the finest sapphires of Kashmir. In addition to these qualities, these sapphires have been spared exposure to heat treatment and their clarity and colour are thus all natural. A matching pair of natural sapphires from Kashmir of this size and quality is very rare and exceptional."
    The lot was eventually sold for a whopping USD 8,358,520 which was 3 times the lower estimate and almost 2 times the upper estimate. The price realized undoubtedly sets the world record for a matching pair of Kashmir blue sapphires set in a pair of earrings, but being a pair, does not interfere with the rankings of the most expensive single Kashmir blue sapphires given above.

    I am afraid that the list of most expensive blue sapphires in the world needs further revision after the stunning performance of some exceptionally beautiful Kashmir blue sapphires at the Sotheby's Magnificent Jewels Geneva Sale held on November 13, 2013. The two lots that did creditably well are :- Lot 332 - A Very Fine Sapphire Ring - set with a cushion-cut Kashmir blue sapphire weighing 21.42 carats, accompanied by SSEF and GGL reports stating that the sapphire is of Kashmir origin, with no indications of heating, with a highly attractive and saturated blue color - poetically also referred to as 'royal blue'- and an outstanding purity. A pre-sale estimate of USD 741,139 - USD 991,819 was placed on the lot, but the lot was sold for a stunning USD 3,231,584, which was 4 times the lower estimate and 3 times the upper estimate.
    The price realized makes the 21.42-carat Kashmir blue sapphire the 3rd most expensive blue sapphire in the world after the 26.41-carat Kashmir sapphire that sold for US$ 3,838,508 at the Christie's Hong Kong Sale in November 2011 and the 19.88-carat, cushion-shaped, Star of Kashmir Sapphire that sold for US$ 3,484,102 at the Christie's Geneva Sale on May 15, 2013. This pushes the 22.66-carat Hill's Kashmir Sapphire that sold for US$ 3,064,000 from the 3rd-place to the 4th-place, and the 62.02-carat Rockefeller Burma Sapphire that sold for US$ 3,031,000 to the 5th-place.

    You have divided the Iranian Crown Jewels into seven categories above. If I am not mistaken you seem to have missed one important category, viz. the Thrones of the Iranian Crown Jewels. There are at least two thrones in the vaults of the Central Bank of Iran, The Naderi Throne and The Sun Throne, also considered as part of the Crown Jewels.
    Images of the Naderi Throne and Sun Throne are attached below :-



    The enormous 5,500-carat Star Rose Quartz, with its distinct six-rayed star, and beautiful rose color is indeed an extraordinary gemstone with no rivals to challenge its position. This clearly indicates the type of gemstones Michael Scott had been going after to enhance his collection, that no doubt resulted in one of the best colored gemstone collections in the world !

    Images of all gemstones listed in the webpage "Famous Topaz Gemstones Cut and Uncut" might be timely and informative for the ongoing discussion. I am uploading images of these gemstones in the order in which they appear on the webpage.


    1) American Golden Topaz
    2) Golden Topaz Sphere - images already uploaded by Johnruby