Christie’s announces THE RED CROSS DIAMOND, a historically important fancy intense yellow, cushion-shaped diamond of 205.07 carat (estimate on request). A symbol of the altruism and heroism of the world’s largest humanitarian network, this famous diamond will live up to its name with part of the sale revenue to be donated to the International Committee of the Red Cross.
The diamond will be offered in Christie’s Magnificent Jewels sale in Geneva on May 11, 2022.
Picture credit: Christie’s
“This is the third time in over 100 years for Christie’s to present this extraordinary canary yellow diamond of 205.07 carats. This is a very special bond and tremendous honour. Part of the proceeds of the sale will benefit the International Committee of the Red Cross, for a cause that is even more poignant in the midst of current events”, said François Curiel, Chairman of Christie’s Europe and Head of the Luxury Department.
The original rough stone was found in 1901 in a De Beers South African mine and is said to have weighed some 375 carats. Besides ranking amongst the largest diamonds in the world, a striking feature of the stone is its pavilion, which is faceted in the shape of a Maltese cross.
On 10 April 1918, the stone was first offered for sale at Christie’s London by the Diamond Syndicate in aid of the British Red Cross Society and the Order of St John, in the Red Cross Auction. The entire sale raised £50,000 (approximately £3 million+ today) and The Red Cross Diamond, the top lot of the auction, achieved a staggering £10,000 (approximately £600,000+ today) and was purchased by the famous London firm S.J. Phillips.
The Red Cross Diamond appeared for sale once more 55 years later at Christie’s Geneva on 21 November 1973, this time achieving CHF 1.8 million and returned to private ownership.
Now offered for the third time at Christie’s in 104 years, this diamond underlines the close relationships our specialists have maintained with collectors, jewels and charitable organisations since 1766, when Christie’s was founded.