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Diamonds
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The De Beers Millennium Star

Diamonds come in a fantastic array of colors, shapes and sizes. Here are some of the world's largest stones:

The Cullinan
The largest diamond found so far, the Cullinan, weighed a whopping 3,106.75 carats uncut (more than a pound) when it was dug up in South Africa in 1905. Named after mine owner Sir Thomas Cullinan, the diamond was cut into 11 gems and a number of smaller pieces. Two of the chunks -- the 530.2 carat Great Star of Africa, and the 317.4 carat Lesser Star of Africa, are the second and fourth largest cut diamonds in the world. Both glittering treasures are part of the British Crown Jewels, on display in the Tower of London.

Introduction
Interactive: Diamond Formation
Dominating Diamonds
Interview with author Kevin Krajick
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The Golden Jubilee
The Excelsior
Found in South Africa in 1893, it weighed 995.2 carats. A mine worker reportedly found the diamond as he was loading a truck. He later turned it over to the mine manager, who gave him a reward, including a horse and a saddle. Diamond cutters initially cut the Excelsior into 10 pieces, the largest weighing 158 carats. Later, the pieces were cut into 21 gems ranging from about 70 carats to less than one carat.

The Star of Sierra Leone
Discovered in Sierra Leone in 1972, weighing 968.8 carats. It was eventually divided into 17 stones, six of which were set in the Star of Sierra Leone Brooch.

The Incomparable
A yellowish gem weighing 890 carats, the Incomparable was discovered in central Africa in the 1980s. It was cut into 15 gems; the largest weighs 407.48 carats.

The Great Mogul
The diamond, discovered in 1650 in India, weighed 793 carats and carries the name of Shah Jehan, builder of the Taj Mahal. Its whereabouts are no longer known.

The Woyie River
Found in 1945 in the Sierra Leone, this 770-carat diamond is the largest ever found in river sediments.

The De Beers Millennium Star
Found in South Africa in the 1990s, weighing 777 carats uncut, this blue-white diamond is considered one of the most flawless stones ever discovered. The pear-shaped stone weighs 203 carats.

The Golden Jubilee
At 545.67 carats, the Golden Jubilee is the world's largest cut diamond. Originally known only as "the Unnamed Brown," it was given to the King of Thailand in 1997 on the 50th anniversary of his coronation.


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