Diamonds are one of the most sought after mining products in the history of the world. When one comes up that is particularly large and of a brilliant color, you have a diamond that will be the envy of all those who collect them or love to wear them. In the category of the largest yellow diamond, one tops them all. Here we will share which is the world’s largest yellow diamond, as well as other notable yellow diamonds which are of interest.
What is the World’s Largest Yellow Diamond?
The world’s largest yellow diamond on record is an uncut light-yellow diamond found in the DeBeers mine which weighed 439.86 carats! It was later cut down, as 200 carats were removed to create a 234.65 cushion-cut fancy yellow diamond. This is the largest cut yellow diamond in the world and the seventh largest polished diamond of any color in the world.
History of the World’s Biggest Yellow Diamond
The diamond was found in the DeBeers Mine in 1888, hence the name the DeBeers Diamond. Nicolas and Deidreck DeBeer owned a farm where diamonds were discovered in the 1860’s. Following this discovery, the DeBeers Consolidated Mines were founded in 1888 which consisted of two mines. Not long after this came the 439.86 carat wonder!
This diamond was bought by the Maharaja of Patiala after which it became the centerpiece of the necklace which came to be known as the Patiala necklace in 1928. Cartier designed this necklace in his early days before becoming the big name in jewelry he is today. The Patiala necklace not only featured the DeBeers diamond but also had various other yellow diamonds ranging from 18 to 73 carats in size.
A Look at the Diamond Color Chart
The shade of a yellow diamond makes a big difference when it comes to the value. Diamonds that have a tint of yellow are fairly common and, therefore, less valuable. On the GIA diamond color chart, you have colorless at D through F and then you have diamonds with a light color at S through Z, with other grades in between.
As you approach Z on the diamond color chart, the value actually decreases, but when diamonds pass Z on the chart, the value begins to increase again, and they become what are known as “fancy color diamonds.” The scale starts with “fancy light” and it runs to the top position of “fancy vivid.” The DeBeers Diamond is one of these rare yellow diamonds that fits within the fancy range.
Other Notable Rare Yellow Diamonds
While the DeBeers diamond may have been the largest yellow diamond, there are several others that are of note.
The Red Cross Diamond- The Red Cross Diamond is the second largest yellow diamond in the world. It is estimated to have weighed 375 carats in the rough and was 205 carats after being cut.
The Golden Empress- Weighing more than 132 carats and fitting in the “fancy intense” range, the Golden Empress is not only the third largest yellow diamond, but it is also the most expensive.
Tiffany Yellow Diamond– This is the fourth largest yellow diamond in the world. In its cut form, it is about 128 carats. The stone is famous for having been worn by Audrey Hepburn when publicity photos were taken for the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Cross of Asia- At 280 carats uncut, the Cross of Asia was the third largest uncut diamond ever discovered. It was later cut down to just below 80 carats.
Oppenheimer Diamond- Another one of the largest uncut diamonds in the world, the Oppenheimer Diamond, is just over 253 carats.
Golden Jubilee Diamond- This is a huge yellow-brown diamond. It was more than 755 carats uncut and as a cut diamond, it weighed 545 carats. However, it doesn’t qualify as a purely yellow diamond in the size rankings.
As you can see, the largest will not always be the most expensive yellow diamond. Different factors affect the price, and some that are particularly large, may not make the fancy color grade. For those that are interested in yellow diamonds, some of the largest and most brilliant are stones that are truly historic and they hold a special place amongst all other gems.
Read all about the world’s most famous diamonds and our complete diamond glossary
Header image source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/southafrica/11621710/De-Beers-puts-Kimberley-its-oldest-diamond-mine-up-for-sale.html