The stories behind Harry Winston’s most iconic diamonds
The stories behind Harry Winston’s most iconic diamonds

Harry Winston is a world-renowned jeweller whose diamonds have been worn by Hollywood royalty, socialites and style icons for decades. From the Hope Diamond to the Taylor-Burton Diamond, Harry Winston’s diamonds are some of the most famous in the world. Here are the stories behind some of his most iconic diamonds:

The Hope Diamond

The Hope Diamond is one of the most famous diamonds in the world, with a long and storied history dating back centuries. The diamond was first owned by King Louis XIV of France, who had it set into a ring. It remained in French royal hands until it was stolen during the French Revolution and ended up in London, where it was bought by an Indian prince. He eventually sold it to Henry Philip Hope, from whom it gets its name.

It changed hands several times before being bought by Evalyn Walsh McLean, an American heiress, in 1911. She wore it often and even slept with it under her pillow, but tragedy struck when her 9-year-old son died suddenly and her husband committed suicide soon afterwards. It is said that she never recovered from their deaths and that the Hope Diamond brought her nothing but bad luck.

In 1949, Harry Winston bought the diamond from Mrs McLean for $154,000 and donated it to the Smithsonian Institution where it remains on display today. Over millions of years old, its dark blue color is due to trace amounts of boron impurities in its crystal structure – making it one of only a handful of blue diamonds in existence.

The Taylor-Burton Diamond

This pear-shaped diamond weighs in at an impressive 69 carats and once belonged to actress Elizabeth Taylor. It was originally mined in 1966 in Botswana and purchased by jewelry designer Cartier soon after. Three years later, Burton bought it for his wife as a 10th anniversary present (he had originally planned to buy her champagne glasses but decided on something sparkly instead).

Taylor wore the diamond often – so much so that it became known as “La Peregrina,” or “the wanderer.” In 1978, Burton sold the diamond at auction to help pay off some of his wife’s debts; four years later, Harry Winston bought it at another auction for $5 million (approximately $18 million today). He then recut it into its current pear shape and sold it to an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum shortly thereafter—although rumor has it that he made a hefty profit on the sale.

Lesotho Promise

This massive 507-carat uncut diamond was discovered in 2006 by workers at Lesotho’s Letseng Mine (hence its name). It is believed to be one of the largest gem-quality rough diamonds ever found—and possibly even THE largest.

The stories behind Harry Winston’s most iconic diamonds are truly fascinating. From the Hope Diamond to the Taylor-Burton Diamond, these stones have a rich history that is steeped in mystery, intrigue, and luxury. Each diamond has its own unique story, and together they paint a picture of an illustrious past filled with royalty, Hollywood glamour, and legendary romance. While the value of these diamonds is undoubtedly great, it is their history and meaning that make them truly priceless. They are a reminder of the power of love, hope, and beauty – values that Harry Winston himself strived to uphold throughout his life.

The stories behind Harry Winston's most iconic diamonds
The stories behind Harry Winston’s most iconic diamonds
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