Revered for their crystal clear blue color, sapphires are one of the most beautiful looking gemstones. While blue sapphires are the most popular, the gem is also found in the glorious colors of a sunset - yellow, pink, orange and purple. According to a Persian legend, the sky’s blue color was a reflection of the giant sapphire on which the Earth rested. Sri Lanka and Myanmar produce the finest sapphires in the world while the rarest of them come from Kashmir.
Now let’s have a look at some of the most gorgeous sapphires in the world:
The Star of India, the largest star sapphire in the world was discovered about 300 years ago in Sri Lanka. Currently displayed in the American Museum of Natural History, it is the presence of the mineral Rutile which creates the star effect in the sapphire making this gem a true star!
The largest faceted sapphire in the world, the Blue Giant of the Orient was also mined in Sri Lanka in 1907. Very little is known about the cornflower-hued gemstone set in a platinum brooch as it was out of the public eye for nearly a century until recently when it reappeared in Christie’s catalogue in 2004.
This spectacular sapphire, the second largest faceted sapphire in the world, again from Sri Lanka, is set in a brooch surrounded by 20 round brilliant cut diamonds. This flawless cushion cut sapphire is currently at display in the National Museum of Natural History, Washington D. C.
Among cut sapphires, the largest in the world is known as Queen Marie of Romania’s Sapphire. It was Cartier’s prize jewel at the 1919 Autumn Exhibition, Spain where it bought by Prince Ferdinand for his wife, Queen Marie of Romania, who later wore it to his coronation in 1922.
This Sri Lankan beauty is set in a diamond and sapphire necklace designed by Cartier. It was acquired and then donated to the National Museum of Natural History by the American socialite Mona von Bismarck.
This mesmerizing, internally flawless, cornflower blue sapphire is considered as a benchmark for Burmese sapphires. It was acquired by John D. Rockefeller Jr. from Mir Usman Ali Khan, the last Nizam of Hyderabad, in 1934.
This famous sapphire, part of the Royal Crown Jewels of Queen Elizabeth II, was originally acquired by Robert II of the House of Stuarts in the 14th century from where it got its name. With his passing he left the stone among other relics to King George III after which it was set into the Imperial State Crown.
The royal engagement ring was first chosen by Princess Diana after the announcement of her engagement to Prince Charles. It became quite a scandal because the sapphire ring surrounded by 14 diamonds was neither custom-made nor unique unlike other royal engagement rings. It was then presented to Kate Middleton by Prince William during their engagement in 2010.