What the 34.65-carat pink diamond known as “Princie” lacks in elegant nomenclature it makes up for with decidedly upscale value.
The diamond, first discovered about 300 years ago in the Golconda mines in southern India, was auctioned by Chrisitie’s in New York for $39.3 million earlier this month.
The diamond drew just two bidders, with action starting at $20 million and continuing for only two minutes, according to Bloomberg.
The winning bid came from Francois Curiel, international head of jewelry at Christie’s and president of Christie’s Asia, bidding on behalf of an anonymous client.
“The gem is considered one of the four most celebrated pink diamonds in the world,” according to Bloomberg. “It was first recorded in the holdings of the Nizam, or monarch, of Hyderabad, India, according to Christie’s.”
It was last sold in 1960, for nearly $71,000 during a London auction.
The buyer was Van Cleef & Arpels, which threw a party attended by Maharani Sita Devi of Boroda and her 14-year-old son, Sayajirao Gaekwad, who was nicknamed “Princie,” according to Christie’s catalog. The gem was named after the youth.
The diamond is a “cushion-cut fancy intense pink” diamond.
It is said to be the third-largest pink diamond in the world after the Darya-ye Noor (between 175 and 195 carats) and the Noor-ol-Ain (60 carats) – both part of the Iranian Crown Jewels but both believed to have been cut from a single 242-carat pink diamond – and the Steinmetz Pink which weighs nearly 60 carats, Bloomberg reported.
The “Princie” has not been seen in public since 1960, according to Christie’s.
Hopefully, the new buyer will consider renaming the gem. When one shells out nearly $40 million for something, they should be allowed to rename it as often as they see fit.