“Blue Giant of the Orient” world’s largest Sapphire
To commemorate the September birthstone of Sapphire we would like to bring attention to the great “Blue Giant of the Orient” a gem that is the largest faceted blue sapphire in the world. The stone is a cornflower hued cushion cut gem at 486.52 carats set in a platinum brooch with a pave-set diamond halo. Very little is known about the gemstone which was out of public eye for about 100 years.
The stone was discovered in Sri Lanka in 1907 and sold to an anonymous collector from America. It was a well-documented event in a Sri Lankan Morning Leader newspaper that announced its findings as a “moonstone sapphire.” At the time a leading exporter purchased the rough sapphire which then weighed more than 600 carats. The medium blue gem stayed quiet under the radar until May 2004 when it appeared in Christie’s Jewel auction catalogue.
Strangely enough the amazing gem was offered up on auction only to fail at selling to any bidders. The large faceted sapphire was estimated to sell for $ 1 million, which is a relative bargain. Shortly after the auction Christies was able to make a deal with an anonymous British buyer who did pay $ 1 million for the world famous sapphire. After this event the gem vanished once again and hasn’t been seen since.
The world’s first second and third largest faceted blue sapphires are all from Sri Lankan origin. These are the Blue Giant of the Orient, the 422.99 carat Logan Blue Sapphire, and the 400 carat Blue Belle of the Orient.
Blue sapphires are a member of the corundum family; they are the most coveted and valuable of all gemstone varieties.
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