Each year the rough and polished stones hitting our news feed seem to get larger, and 2022 was no different. In an impressive 12 months for large diamonds popping up at auction, or coming out of a mine. These are the top 10.
1. The Enigma Sotheby’s sold this 555.55-carat, fancy-black diamond to cryptocurrency entrepreneur Richard Heart for $4.3 million in February at a one-off sale. The stone, believe to have originated in outer space, has 55 facets. The auction house offered the diamond without reserve.
2. The Golden Canary This pear-shaped, 303.10-carat, fancy-deep-brownish-yellow diamond fetched $12.4 million at the December 7 Sotheby’s New York Magnificent Jewels sale. The auction house originally expected it to bring in more than $15 million.
3. The Rock A pear-shaped, 228.31-carat, G-color, VS1-clarity diamond made its debut at Christie’s Magnificent Jewels in Geneva on May 11. The stone went for $21.9 million against a presale estimate of $20 million to $30 million.
4. The Red Cross This cushion-shaped, 205.07-carat, fancy-intense-yellow diamond was also part of the May 11 Magnificent Jewels sale Christie’s held in Geneva. Part of the auction revenue for the diamond, which garnered $14.3 million, was donated to the International Committee of the Red Cross.
5. Lucapa’s 204-carat rough Lucapa Diamond Company recovered a 204-carat, high-quality rough diamond from its Mothae mine in Lesotho in May. It sold the stone to Graff-owned subsidiary Safdico through a supply agreement.
6. The Lulo Rose Lucapa discovered this 170-carat, type IIa pink rough, called the Lulo Rose, in July at its Lulo site in Angola. The miner claims the stone is the “largest pink diamond recovered in the last 300 years.”
7. Another Lulo special In September, Lucapa unearthed its third rough on the list: a 160-carat, type IIa, high-quality diamond from Lulo. The stone ranked as the sixth-largest to come from the Angolan mine.
8. Mountain Province’s 152-carat yellow Mountain Province sold this rough yellow diamond, weighing 151.60 carats, at its tender in Antwerp in September. The stone, which the miner extracted from its Gahcho Kué deposit in Canada, is an octahedron with “exceptional clarity.”
9. Lucapa’s 131-carat stone Lucapa was on a roll in 2022, with its fourth entry into the top 10: a 131-carat, type IIa, high-quality diamond it recovered from the Lulo mine. The rough is the 29th stone over 100 carats the company has dug up from the site.
10. Gem Diamonds’ 129-carat rough This 129-carat rough, which Gem Diamonds found in May at its Letšeng mine in Lesotho, was the first over 100 carats for the company in 2022.
Main image: The 555.55-carat Enigma. (Sotheby’s)