The Conde Pink Diamond obtains its name from Louis II de Bourbon, the Prince of Condé, who was a successful general of the French Army winning several military victories during the “Thirty-Years War.” King Louis XIII of France, the monarch at that time, is believed to have offered the diamond to the Prince of Condé as a token of appreciation in 1643, although it may have actually been King Louis XIV who made the gesture.
The Condé Pink diamond also referred to as the “Condé Diamond” or “Le Grand Condé” is a pear-shaped diamond weighing 9.01 carats. It gets its color from the distortion of its crystalline structure which occurred during its rise from the depths of the earth. This distortion bends the light giving the stone its pink hue.
The Condé Pink diamond was most-likely discovered in the famous Kollur mines, near Golconda, in Andhra Pradesh in Southern India in the mid-17th century. Other famous diamonds thought to have originated from these mines are the Darya-i-Nur, the Nur-ul-Ain, Shah (Jahaan) Jahan and Agra diamond. Pink diamonds such as the Condé Pink are considered “fancy-colored (pink, red, purple and blue) diamonds, and are extremely rare in occurrence comprising only 0.1% of all naturally mined-diamonds.
It is thought that Jean Baptiste Tavernier, a noted traveler and diamond trader of the time, may have brought the diamond to France as it is known that he had dealings with King Louis XIV, and possibly, King Louis XIII.
The diamond remained in the Condé family until in 1892, the Duc d'Aumale willed it to the French Government. Today, it is on display in the Museé de Condé located in the Chateau de Chantilly in Chantilly, France, its permanent home. On October 11th, 1926, the diamond was stolen from the museum but later it was found and returned.
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