The world’s biggest blue star sapphire — weighing in at 1,404.49 carats, equivalent to about 280g — has been found in a mine in Sri Lanka.
Local gemologists say the gem is worth at least $100 million, but could sell for up to $175 million.
According to Ceylon Today, the sapphire was discovered last August in Ratnapura, a town in southern Sri Lanka known as the “City of Gems.”
The current owner, who wants to remain anonymous, told the paper the sapphire was “destined to be a priceless museum piece,” adding that the stone is so big it “cannot set in any kind of jewellery.”
The sapphire has been named the “The Star of Adam” after a Muslim belief that Adam arrived in Sri Lanka after being sent away from the Garden of Eden. It is claimed he then lived on the slopes of a mountain now known as Adam’s Peak.
Star sapphires get their name from the six-pointed star-shaped reflection that appears on their surface once they are polished.
According to Simon Redfern, Professor in Earth Sciences at The University of Cambridge, Sri Lanka has been known for its gem deposits for more than 2,000 years.
“It seems likely that Sinbad’s ‘Valley of Gems’ in the Tales of the Arabian Nights is a reference to the Ratnapura area,” he wrote in a piece for The Conversation.
He noted that the town’s gem-bearing gravels have yielded a number of historic gemstones, including a 400-carat red spinel given to Catherine the Great of Russia, and a giant oval-cut spinel, known as the “Black Prince Ruby” (it was mistakenly identified as a ruby), which features in the British Queen’s imperial state crown.
Official figures show Sri Lanka’s gem exports increased by 135%, from $70 million in 2010 to $165 million in 2014.
The surge in demand may have been sparked by interest in the Duchess of Cambridge’s engagement ring, formerly owned by Princess Diana, which features a large Ceylon Blue sapphire.
I think it is rightly polished as a Cabochon (to show the star and to retain the max weight). From the pic it is clear that it is not a gem grade stone. It fails on all parameters of clarity, flaws. Had it been used to make jewelry, it needed to be cut into many pieces looking at the cracks and it would have lost its value.
As rightly said, it is of scientific interest only and rightly belong to a museum.
Locals always say it is worth millions . It rarely exceeds the value we are likely to pay for it . If you had 175 million ? dollars ? would you buy this rock ?I own a few stones and I would not pay that for it .
yes….locals think in terms of retail price. Take a look at the ludicrous prices asked for aquamarine from Mt. Antero in colorado.There is no way for a cutter such as myself to make any money on cutting this stuff. I cannot charge “retail”. From me you get the cutters price.
Exactly thats the point.
If it is to be cut for jewelry, out of 1400K, one may get 500-600K max at the most out of it.
Even considering 200-300 dollars per carat the value of the stones may not exceed 1 million dollars (purely considering the lack of clarity and inclusions / flaws and cracks visible).
Thats why I said it is of scientific interest and may be some museum will pay the asking price of the owner.
Not disrespecting the find but stating the market situation.
Hi, currently I’m in Sri Lanka, I held this stone, I also have the certificate and the video for it. I went to see the owner yesterday as well.
Quality is very poor, it came to me at $80 per carat from the previous owner Nov 2015, I didn’t think it was worth even that. I was told the current owner paid $60 per carat, which is around $84,000.
I was told he has some connection in media get this stone hyped up. I deal with a lot of rough and polished stone, also I manage high end stones for other owners as well, so what’s the price I would pay, honest opinion only because of the size, $50,000 USD, then again I would never buy it, to me it’s not worth even that.
So just waiting to see who would buy it.
Milli, please contact me at [email protected], i have some questions for you abot a sapphire
Guys…. I have 2950ct natural blue star sapphire…. double than a world record sapphire..