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The Rockefeller Emerald and the Enduring Allure of the Gorgeous Green Stone

The world’s most expensive emerald ever to be sold at auction

The Rockefeller Emerald and the Enduring Allure of the Gorgeous Green Stone

Photo: The Rockefeller Emerald, courtesy of Christie’s

Regardless of the era or occasion, emeralds always have a captivating quality, due in no small part to that endlessly deep and gorgeous green hue.

The sale of the stunning Rockefeller emerald yesterday is yet another reason to celebrate the alluring stone. Auctioned at Christie’s, the 18.04-carat gemstone had been touted by the media as potentially being the world’s most expensive emerald​​ on a price per carat basis. The headlines were realized when the stone was purchased by Harry Winston for $5.5 million.

Its provenance, once owned by one of America’s most prominent families​, added substantially to its incredible value. John D. Rockefeller, Jr. bought the stone in 1930 as a center stone for a brooch for his wife Abby Aldrich Rockefeller. Upon her death in 1948, their youngest son, David Rockefeller, inherited the emerald and had it remounted by jeweler Raymond Yard into this extravagant emerald and diamond ring.

“$305,500 per carat is, by a good margin, the highest price per carat ever achieved for an emerald sold at auction,” says Beladora founder and jewelry expert, Russell Fogarty. “This eclipses the previous record of $282,000 per carat set by the sale of Elizabeth Taylor’s 23.46 ct Bulgari emerald pendant brooch in December 2011, and with good reason,” adds Fogarty​. “The Rockefeller emerald is the perfect combination of impeccable characteristics: superb quality, big, but not too big, and a highly important provenance.”

Fittingly, a record breaking stone.

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