Posted on Thursday, February 1st, 2018 at 8:23 pm by LaLonde Jewelers
First in a three-part series. Over the next three newsletters, we will take an in-depth look at the jewels from IRAN.
Iran has one of the most extensive collections of jewels in the world. In 1935 Persia became Iran, the name Iran is the Persian word for the country. The Persian empire began in 550 BC. It stretched from Anatola (Turkey) to Egypt, Western Asia (Saudi Arabia) to Northern India and Central Asia (China, Russia and Afghanistan). This was the largest empire of its day.
This so far doesn’t have anything to do with gems except for the fact that those geographic areas are all gem and gold rich. Some of the first known diamond mines were located in India. Rubies, sapphires and emeralds were all found in Central Asia.
Consequently the Persians flexed their muscles to conquer these lands, which expanded and contracted. The spoils go the the conquerer.
As the various rulers acquired these gold and gems, artisans crafted may different objects. Many were confiscated from neighboring countries.
It was customary in these times to share a portion of the booty with friendly neighboring countries to keep the peace.
Jewel Studded Globe:
A jewel studded globe, commissioned by Nasseridin Shah in the 1850’s. The piece is approximately 44 inches high and 18 inches in diameter and weighs approximately 75 pounds of pure gold. The globe is set with 51,000 gems. The seas and oceans are shown with emeralds, land is displayed in rubies, spinel and diamonds. The largest stones are a 75cts ruby, 110cts spinel, 175cts emerald, 175cts sapphire and 15cts diamond.
The Pahlavi Crown:
The Pahlavi crown was made for Reza Shah. It is made of red velvet, gold, silver and 3,380 diamonds totaling 1,144cts the largest of which is a 60cts yellow diamond. There is also 369 perfectly matched natural pearls and 5 emeralds weighing 200cts, the largest of which is 100cts. The largest sapphire weighs approximately 20cts. The last Shah of Iran wore this crown at his coronation on October 26, 1967.
The Kiani Crown:
The Kiani crown was used during the Qujar dynasty. It is made of red velvet, 1800 pearls, 300 emeralds, the largest of which is 80cts. There is also 1800 rubies and spinels, the largest weight 120cts. Also the largest diamond weighs 23cts.
The Royal Sword:
The royal sword was worn by Mohammad Reza Shah during his coronation in 1967. The sword is made of gold and silver with approximately 3000 gems. It was presented to Nasseridin Shah by his prime minister Amin-o’Sultan in 1894.
The Darya-e-Noor is an 186cts diamond measuring 41.40mm x 29.50mm x 12.15mm Taviz cut. It’s name means Sea of Light. It is one of the older diamonds known to man. This stone was initially owned by the first mogul emperor of India. It was later taken by Persia’s Nadir Shah during the sack of Delhi in 1739. Around the mid 1800’s the stone was mounted into an elaborate frame with 457 diamonds and 4 rubies. The frame is made in the style of the emblem of the Imperial Government of Iran “The lion and the Sun”. During the Sack of Delhi another famous diamond the Koh-i-nor was stolen and never resurfaced.
Look for the second installment of IRANIAN ROYAL JEWELS in two weeks!
Written by Daniel J. LaLonde
© LaLonde Jewelers 2018