Friday, February 27, 2009
The Regent Diamond
The adventurous history of the Regent is very much like that of several other great diamonds. Greed, murder and remorse play a part in the opening chapter. Trouble - political, social, and personal - accompanies this gem to it's last resting place. Originally known as the Pitt, this 410-carat stone was one of the last large diamonds to be found in India. It is said to have been discovered by a slave in the Parteal Mines (also spelled 'Partial') on the Kistna River about 1701. The slave stole the enormous rough concealing it in bandages of a self-inflicted leg wound, and fled to the seacoast. There, he divulged his secret to an English sea captain, offering him half the value of the stone in return for safe passage to a free country. But during the voyage to Bombay, temptation overcame this seafaring man and he murdered the slave took th diamond. After selling it to an Indian diamond merchant named Jamchund for about $5000, the captain squandered the proceeds in dissipation and, in a fit of remorse and delirium tremens, hanged himself.