Darya-ye Noor

Darya-ye Noor
Darya-e Noor Diamond of Iran.png
Weight 182 carats (36 g)
Color Pale pink
Cut Tabular, free-form. Inscribed.
Country of origin India
Mine of origin Golconda

The Darya-ye Noor (Persian: دریای نور which means "Sea of Light", or "Ocean of Light" in Persian; also spelled Darya-i-Noor, Darya-e Noor and Darya-i-Nur) is one of the largest diamonds in the world, weighing an estimated 182 carats (36 g). Its colour, pale pink, is one of the rarest to be found in diamonds. The Darya-ye Noor presently forms part of the Iranian Crown Jewels and is on display at the Central Bank of Iran in Tehran.[1]

Contents

History

This diamond, like the Koh-i-Noor, was mined at the Golconda mines, more specifically Paritala-Kollur Mine in Andhra Pradesh, India.[2] It was owned by the Mughal emperors.

In 1739, Nader Shah of Iran invaded Northern India, occupied Delhi and then massacred many of its inhabitants. As payment for returning the crown of India to the Mughal emperor, Muhammad, he took possession of the entire fabled treasury of the Mughals, including the Darya-i-noor, in addition to the Koh-i-noor and the Peacock throne. All of these treasures were carried to Iran by Nader Shah and the Darya-i-noor has remained there ever since.

Nasir ad-Din Nadar with the Darya-ye Noor on his uniform

After Nader Shah's death, the Darya-ye Noor was inherited by his grandson, Shahrokh Mirza. It then passed into the possession of Alam Khan Khozeimeh, and later, of Lotf Ali Khan Zand, a member of Iran's Zand dynasty. Agha Mohammad Khan, founder of Qajar dynasty, defeated the Zands, and thus the Darya-e-noor came into the possession of the Qajars. Fath Ali Shah Qajar had his name inscribed on one facet of the diamond. Later, Nasser-al-Din Shah Qajar often wore it on an armband. He apparently believed that this diamond had been one adorning the crown of Cyrus. When armbands fell from royal fashion, he wore the diamond as a brooch. On occasion, the gem would be left in the care of high personages of the land, as a sign of honor. It was eventually kept hidden in the Golestan Palace treasury museum until Mozaffar al-Din Shah Qajar's time -- this monarch wore it as a hat decoration while visiting Europe in 1902. Reza Shah, founder of the Pahlavi dynasty, wore the diamond as a decoration on his military hat during his coronation in 1926, and it was used in Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi's coronation ceremony in 1967.

Possible association

In 1965, a Canadian team conducting research on the Iranian Crown Jewels concluded that the Darya-e-Noor may well have been part of a large pink diamond that had been studded in the throne of the mughal emperor Shah Jahan, and had been described in the journal of the French jeweller Jean-Baptiste Tavernier in 1642, who called it the "Diamanta Grande Table". This diamond may have been cut into two pieces; the larger part is the Darya-e-noor ("Sea of Light"); the smaller part is believed to be the 60 carats (12 g) Noor-ol-Ein diamond, presently studded in a tiara also in the Iranian Imperial collection.

References

  1. ^ http://www.iranchamber.com/museum/royal_jewels/national_iranian_jewels07.php
  2. ^ Deccan Heritage, H. K. Gupta, A. Parasher and D. Balasubramanian, Indian National Science Academy, 2000, p. 144, Orient Blackswan, ISBN 81-7371-285-9

See also

External links


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