Sotheby’s to auction 400-yr-old diamond

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iol news pic France Historical Diamond AP The Beau Sancy, a 34.98 carat diamond that will be put on sale by Sotheby's auction house in Geneva next month, is presented in Paris, Monday April 23, 2012. The Beau Sancy diamond, a stone of historical importance with a royal provenance stretching back to Marie de Medicis is estimated between two and four million dollars, (1.5 to 3 million Euros).(AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)

The 400-year-old “Beau Sancy,” one of the world's oldest and most storied diamonds in private hands, is up sale at Sotheby's auction house. Weighing in at 34.98 carats, the sparkling pear cut gem is estimated to be worth up to $4 million.

Those who don't have the money to buy the jewel can see it on display ahead of next month's sale.

Cut from the famous gem mines in the Indian city of Golconda, the diamond made its way through four royal European families and once belonged to Queen Marie de Medici of France. Its most recent owners are the descendants of the last Emperor of Germany.

The gem is currently on display in Paris. It will travel to London and Zurich before its auctioning in Geneva on May 14. - Sapa-AP


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