34-Carat Diamond Worth US$2.7 Million Found in Flea Market

A gem that was mistaken for a cheap costume piece is now valued at nearly US$2.7 million.

Nov 01, 2021 | By luxuo
featonbys diamond
Image: Featonby’s Auctoneers

An exceptionally rare 34-carat stone was mistaken for a cheap piece of costume jewellery and was nearly thrown away. The gem belongs to a woman in her 70s living in Northern England and has been valued at over US$2 million, according to the BBC. The gem is said to be bigger than a one-pound coin.

The owner, who wished to remain anonymous, said that she could not recall where she acquired the stone but believes she could have gotten it at a flea market. She was cleaning her home and almost binned it before a neighbour suggested getting it valued.

featonby diamond 34 carat
Image: Featonby’s Auctioneers

Mark Lane of Featonby’s Auctioneers told the BBC: “The lady came in with a bag of jewellery as she just thought she would bring it in as she was passing because she had another appointment in the town. It had been in a box along with her wedding band and a number of low-value costume jewellery items.”

Lane initially thought the stone was cubic zirconia, a diamond lookalike, and let it sit on a desk for a few days before he tested it. The diamond was then sent to experts in Antwerp, Belgium, who confirmed it was a 34-carat diamond. 

mark lane
Image: Featonby’s Auctioneers

The hot commodity is being auctioned off on November 30 at Featonby’s single-lot sale aptly named “The Secret Stone”. It is expected to fetch between US$2.2 million and US$2.7 million according to the auction house.

Also discovered in a similar fashion was the long-lost Fabergé Third Imperial Egg. The egg initially was lost after an auction in 1964 and then popped up in 2015 in a flea market in the Midwestern USA. The egg was found by a scrap metal dealer who then took it to Wartski jewellers after randomly Googling the egg. The egg will be on display in London from November 20 till May 8 2022.

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