By  , Wednesday, October 04, 2006

 

603 Carat Rough Diamond

The largest diamond unearthed in 13 years was found on August 22 at the Letseng Diamond Mine in Lesotho, a small kingdom completely surrounded by the nation of South Africa.

Named “Lesotho Promise,” the diamond will go on sale today in Antwerp.  A small group of the world’s top diamond cutters will be allowed several hours to examine the diamond before submitting bids.  Described as “a third bigger than a golf ball,” a valuation cannot be determined until it is known how many cut diamonds will be fashioned from it.  The winning bid will be announced on Monday.

The largest rough diamond ever found was the Cullinan, at 3106 carats.  Second largest was the 995 carat Excelsior, both uncovered in South Africa.  Lesotho Promise is the largest found since the 777 carat Millenium Star which was discovered in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1993.

 Lesotho Africa

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