Sotheby's Auction Offers an Over 555-Carat 'Extraterrestrial' Black Diamond
03:33 GMT 18.01.2022 (Updated: 13:35 GMT 06.08.2022)
Carbonado, or black diamonds, are extremely uncommon and only typically found in Brazil and Central Africa. Their carbon isotopes and high hydrogen levels have prompted several cosmic origin theories, including meteoritic impact, a diamond-bearing asteroid, or even an ancient supernova explosion.
Sotheby's auction house in Dubai is showcasing a diamond that looks absolutely extraterrestrial in nature.
The 555.55-carat black diamond, whose origins "are shrouded in mystery," is believed to have come from outer space, and is showcased and auctioned as "The Enigma"
The rare gem was displayed to journalists on Monday in the UAE's capital city as part of a tour that included stops in Dubai and Los Angeles before being auctioned off in London in early February.
According to an Associated Press report upon the exhibit, the diamond is expected to fetch at least £5 million ($6.8 million) at Sotheby's. According to Sophie Stevens, a jewelry consultant at Sotheby's Dubai, quoted in the report, the number five holds much significance for the diamond, which also has 55 facets.
"The shape of the diamond is based on the Middle Eastern palm symbol of the Hamsa, which stands for strength and it stands for protection," she said, noting that "Hamsa" means five in Arabic. "So there’s a nice theme of the number five running throughout the diamond."
And to add to the sale's price, the black diamond, according to Stevens, is most likely from space.
"With the carbonado diamonds, we believe that they were formed through extraterrestrial origins, with meteorites colliding with the Earth and either forming chemical vapor disposition or indeed coming from the meteorites themselves," she said.
The auction house has stated that it intends to accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment, following the successful sale of the Key 10138 diamond
at a "record price."