The Tiffany Yellow Diamond

22 Nov 2010

Also known as The Tiffany Yellow, The Tiffany is one of the largest fancy vivid, yellow diamonds in the world.  It has been described as one of the finest examples of its kind ever seen.

For virtually all of the time since it was first purchased, by Tiffany & Co., almost 120 years ago, it has been displayed, for the pleasure of the many who have come to see it, at Tiffany’s prestigious head office address, on 5th Avenue, in New York.

The Tiffany Yellow is probably best known today, in its present setting, in the ‘Bird on the Rock’.

The Tiffany was famous long before it’s well remembered appearance in the 1961 film Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

The original rough Diamond Crystal, a 287.42 carat Octahedron, was found in South Africa in 1877, in one of the central Kimberley mines.  At the time it was one of the largest vivid-yellow diamonds that had ever been seen.

Following its discovery, it was shipped to its owners in France where it was subsequently purchased by the head of Tiffany & Co. in Paris on behalf of the US parent company.

In 1879, after a year of studying, it was cut in Paris under the supervision of the noted gemologist George F. Kunz. The result was a 128.5 carat, cushion shaped, canary-yellow diamond, the largest cut diamond of that colour ever known.

In June, 1890 it was shipped to Tiffany’s head office in New York where, apart from being displayed at a limited number of exhibitions in the United States and elsewhere around the world, it has remained ever since.

At one time, reportedly, The Tiffany was offered for sale but was never bought. Its value today is unknown and, according to Tiffany’s it is simply not for sale.

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