Second-Largest Diamond in History Is Found

Only a gem among the British Crown Jewels is bigger
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 19, 2015 6:00 AM CST

(Newser) – Canadian mining outfit Lucara Diamond has just uncovered the world's second-largest diamond—and the biggest one found in more than a century. Found in the south lobe of the Karowe mine in central Botswana, the Type IIa stone is 1,111 carats and just slightly smaller than a tennis ball, reports Bloomberg. Only the 3,106-carat Cullinan Diamond among the British Crown Jewels, found in South Africa in 1905, is bigger; the largest diamond found in the last 100 years was a 603-carat stone. However, that find has now been shuffled to third place, thanks to a second diamond newly found in Karowe that's 813 carats, reports the BBC. A 374-carat stone was also found.

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"I am truly at a loss for words," Lucara's CEO says. "The significance of the recovery of a gem-quality stone larger than 1,000 carats, the largest for more than a century, and the continued recovery of high-quality stones from the south lobe, cannot be overstated." So what is this rare rock worth? "It is almost impossible to estimate a value for such an extraordinary stone given that a valuation is highly dependent on the color, clarity, and cutting and polishing characteristics," an analyst says. Bloomberg notes that Lucara sold a 341.9-carat stone in July for $20.6 million. Others tell the Financial Times that the find is "a balance sheet changing development" for Lucara, which recently made large diamonds its focus. (This blue diamond, a daughter's birthday gift, just sold for a record amount at auction.)

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