The Famous Sancy Diamond

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The story of this diamond is one of the strangest and the most mysterious ones. Some believe that stories of few renowned stones entangled into one magnificent tale of the Sancy diamond. We will try to base our account on the most solid, reliable, historical facts. "Sancy", as well as many other Great Diamonds, arrived to Europe from India. Sancy's known history began circa 1475, when the diamond appeared for the first time in the court of the Duke of Burgundy Charles "the Hasty".

Famous Sancy Diamond
Back then, the "Sancy" diamond was the largest diamond in Europe. It was cut in a double-rose shape. Its initial weight was 139.5 carats. According to the Arabic tradition that reached Europe together with the stone, the diamond had power to grant its owner a victory over the his military rival. Charles the Hasty believed in the magical properties of the stone but it failed him harshly. His armies were defeated by Louis XI and the duke Charles the Hasty was killed in a battle. The diamond incrusted into duke's helmet was taken by a simple soldier. The soldier knew nothing of stone's worth and used the diamond as a flint. For a while, "Sancy" scattered between commoners, as it passed from hand to hand for a ridiculous price as a cheap trinket, until in 1489 a Spanish merchant sold it to the king of Portugal Alphonse the African.

The Spanish King often used the diamond as collateral for moneylenders and eventually sold it to member of de Sancy family. For almost a hundred years the stone became hereditary among the de Sancy, until it reached the Marquis de Sancy Nicholas Gurley. In 1588 Nicolas promised the diamond to the French king Henry III.

Unfortunately, on his way to France, the servant of Marquis de Sensei was attacked by bandits. In order to save the diamond, the loyal servant had to swallow the stone.

Marquis de Sancy had a search conducted until the site of the messenger's robbery and murder was found. When the body was disinterred and autopsied, the jewel was returned to its owner. Marquis de Sancy tried again to sell the diamond. It took him a long time to find the right buyer. Eventually de Sancy sold the stone to Queen Elizabeth.

Later the diamond vanished again- there are several theories regarding its whereabouts at the time. Either way, in 1775 during the coronation of King Louis XIV "Sancy" adorned his crown.

During the French Revolution in 1792 the diamond has been stolen along with the royal treasures. Even Napoleon, who succeeded in finding almost all the treasures of Louis XIV, failed to find the "Sancy". When the diamond appeared again it was owned by the Duchess Marion Bourgignion. The Duchess sold the stone to a wealthy Russian industrialist Pavel Nikolayevich Demidov, who in turn gave it to his bride Aurora Karlovna Sharnivel.
After few years of marriage Pavel Demidov died, and his widow married A.N.Caramazin, the son of a prominent Russian writer. The latest news about the diamond came from Paris, where the Caramzin family resided. In a letter to her sister, Aurora writes that "Sancy and a string of pearls create a stunning effect."

There is no information regarding Sancy's owners after the Sharnivel family. The journey of this magnificent diamond still continues and one day it will return to cast its spectacular light and to illuminate a name of someone new; someone who will become in his turn, nothing but just another milestone on the infinite voyage of Sancy through history.