The Excelsior Diamond

On the day of the diamond's discovery the contract between the mining company and the syndicate of firms in London which purchased its diamonds expired, meaning that there was very little press coverage of the huge diamond’s discovery.

In 1903 — after it had been sitting in a vault in London for ten years – we were commissioned to cut the colossal stone into smaller diamonds. The diamond required very specific handling and cutting, largely due to black inclusions which prevented it from being polished as a single stone.

Though the final diamonds from the Excelsior suite yielded huge diamonds by any standard then and now, it would have been possible for the diamond to have been cut and cleaved into larger pieces — had there been an end customer who showed interest in such a mighty diamond.

As there wasn’t, eleven beautiful fancy shape diamonds were cut and polished to the highest standards of the day in true Asscher style.

Of the final suite, three of the diamonds were purchased by Tiffany&Co. for their flagship store in New York City. The fate of the rest of the diamonds remains largely unknown, some of the diamonds may have been recut again into smaller diamonds.

Excelsior I 69.68 carats pear shape Excelsior II 47.03 carats pear shape Excelsior III 46.90 carats marquise shape Excelsior IV 40.23 carats pear shape Excelsior V 34.91 carats marquise Excelsior VI 28.61 carats marquise Excelsior VII 26.30 carats pear shape Excelsior VIII 24.31 carats pear shape Excelsior IX 16.78 carats pear shape Excelsior X 13.86 carats pear shape Excelsior XI 9.82 carats pear shape