The Golden Empress
FANCY INTENSE YELLOW, 132.55 CTS
The yellow diamond has become a Graff signature, as a procession of entrancing golden gemstones has passed through our hands over the decades. Several of these have marked the pages of diamond history – including the 118.08 carat Delaire Sunrise and the 100.09 carat Graff Vivid Yellow – but none have matched the magnitude of the Golden Empress.
A Golden Opportunity
Coloured diamonds are a particular rarity – as few as one in 10,000 stones – and are therefore highly prized. Laurence Graff knew instinctively that the 229 carat opaque rough uncovered at Lesotho’s Letšeng Mine had the potential to produce a number of very special jewels.
‘The opportunity to shape a diamond of such rare and vivid colour as this is a honour beyond words.’
A Fine Balance
Colour introduces a new dimension of risk into the of process of faceting and refining a stone – each facet has to be precisely articulated to open the diamond up to light and ignite the fire inside, but a single misjudgement and the colour is lost.
A diamond’s colour is the result of the play of trace elements deep within the crystal structure. Although a rainbow of colours, with near-infinite nuances of shade within them, have passed beneath our loupes, nothing has ever matched the vibrant honeyed tones of the Golden Empress.
A Royal Family
The Golden Empress was accompanied by an entourage of satellite stones: two brilliant rounds and six pear shape diamonds, the largest weighing 21.34 carats – an Empress and an imperial family, bathed in golden light.