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Cullinan Diamond: Unique 29.6 carat blue diamond found in South African mine

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A 29.6 carat blue diamond said to be "exceptional" has been found in a South African mine by Petra Diamonds. Fox News reported on Jan. 22, 2014, that the Cullinan Diamond is one of the rarest and most coveted in the world with a price tag that could range upwards of tens of millions of dollars.

The diamond was found at the Cullinan mine near Pretoria and it is acorn-sized. The miner said it is small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, but as everyone knows, that is still very large.

Petra has owned the mine where the 29.6 carat diamond was found, since 2008. It's the same mine where the Cullinan Diamond was found back in 1905 and weighed in at around 3,106 carats.

"By some margin ... this is probably the most significant stone we've ever, in terms of blue stones, recovered," Chief Executive Johan Dippenaar said.

"The stones in the last year or so are selling well above $2 million per carat. That's not my quote, that's updates in the market," he said ahead of the company's first-half trading statement.

There are other diamonds that have been found in the Cullinan mine including:

  • 2013 - 25.5 carat Cullinan blue diamond sold for $16.9 million
  • 2008 - Star of Josephine diamond sold for $9.49 million

Analyst Cailey Barker at brokers Numis has said that the new Cullinan diamond could end up fetching somewhere between $15 million and $20 million at an auction.

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