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Rare blue diamond sold for $40M at auction

PHOTO | BBC

A very rare blue diamond sold for over $40m (£32m) at a Christie’s auction in Geneva, news agencies said.

The 17.61 carat, pear-shaped Bleu Royal diamond, set in a ring, fetched $43.8 million, they said.

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It is the “largest internally flawless fancy vivid blue gem” ever to appear for sale in auction history, Christie’s said..

Part of a private collection for 50 years, it was the first time the Bleu Royal was sold at an auction.

“This diamond is amongst the rarest to have been unearthed,” the auction house said in a statement.

Christie’s said only three fancy vivid blue diamonds over 10 carats had appeared for sale in its 250-year auction history, in 2010, 2014 and 2016.

The 14.62 carat Oppenheimer Blue sold for over $57 million in 2016, according to Christie’s.

“We are extremely pleased,” Max Fawcett, Christie’s head of jewellery in Geneva told AFP of Tuesday’s sale, adding it was the “the most expensive jewellery lot sold in all of 2023” by any auction house worldwide.

On Monday, Christie’s sold a Rolex watch worn by US actor Marlon Brando in the film Apocalypse Now for about $5m, news agencies reported. “M. Brando” was hand-engraved on the back of the watch, Christies said.

Separately, Christie’s is carrying out an online sale of a pearl necklace worn by Audrey Hepburn in the final scene of the film “Roman Holiday”. The sale is taking place between 3 and 16 November.

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