On June 7, 2010, the DC Chapter of the GIA Alumni Association had the opportunity to hear from Mr. Richard Wise. Gemologist and historian Richard W. Wise discussed his theories of when and where Tavernier acquired the Blue Diamond and it’s history down to the Hope Diamond. The story of the French Blue begins when it was unearthed in the Kollur mine at Golconda in India. This diamond was acquired by a French jeweler and gem merchant, Jean-Baptiste Tavernier while he was in India.
In 1668, when he returned to France, the stone was sold to Louis XIV. At that point, the gem weighed 116 carats and was called the Tavernier Blue.
Tavernier sold the 116 carat blue diamond to King Louis XIV of France for 147 kilograms of pure gold. The diamond was re-cut down to 68 carats by King Lois XIV and became the French Blue, a royal crown jewel. While the novel ends there, Richard discussed the French Blue being stolen in 1792 and re-emerging as a 45 Carat Hope Diamond.
Richard also discussed Blue-white Diamonds that glow blue without florescence. GIA’s diamond grading system.
Type 2A Colorless grade and the grey shade seen in the Hope, Wittelsbach, and other blue diamonds. GIA Hue space and other topics of interest.
Bottom Line for Diamonds? If you like it, Buy It!
Bottom Line for the Book? Just Buy It!!
You will Like It!
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Meeting Summary by Charlie Marts
Photos by Melanie Marts