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GEMS
Lesson 4 - Page 3

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Louis XIV had the blue diamond cut into a heart-shaped 67 1/8_carat gem, which he wore during court ceremonies. The gem seems to have been bad luck to Louis XIVís descendants. Louis XVI and his wife Marie Antoinette both wore the diamond. They were killed during the French revolution in 1793. This event was the end of the French kings. The diamond was stolen during the robbery of the French crown jewels. It reappeared in 1812 in a smaller, 44.5 carat size. Supposedly, the cutting was done by a Dutchman named Wilhelm Fals. He is said to have died of grief after his son, Hendrick stole the gem from him. Hendrick Fals later killed himself.

Tragedy continued to affect the owners of the stone. The King of England, George IV soon acquired the diamond. He too went bankrupt and died in 1830. The gem was next bought by Henry Hope of London. Hope had the stone recut into its present shape, hence its name, the Hope Diamond. Hopeís descendants also lost all of their money. They sold the stone to a Turkish sultan, Abdul_Hamid II. He was overthrown by an army revolt within a few months, and died penniless.


Marie Antoinette

Abdul-Hamid II, last sultan of Turkey

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