In Greek mythology Leto, the daughter of the Titans Coeus and Phoebe, had an affair with Zeus then became pregnant with twins. When Hera, Zeus’s wife, discovered this, she forbade Leto from giving birth on any terra firma. Leto discovered the barren floating island of Asterios, later renamed Delos, which was neither a mainland nor a real island, she gave birth there and promised the island wealth that would from the worshippers who would flock to the obscure birthplace of the splendid god who was about to be born. Leto gave birth to twins, Artemis, the elder twin, was born without difficulty but according to Homer she laboured for nine nights and nine days with Apollo. In Greek and Roman mythology, diamonds were believed to be the tears of the gods or splinters that had broken off from falling stars. Artemis became one of the most venerated of the Ancient Greek deities and Apollo is recognised as the god of music, truth and prophecy, healing, the sun and light, and poetry. In Hellenistic times, as Apollo Helios, he became identified among Greeks with Helios, Titan god of the sun, and his twin sister Artemis similarly equated with Selene, Titan goddess of the moon.
In April Sotheby’s set a new world auction record for any diamond or jewel when the Pink Star, a 59.60-carat oval mixed-cut Fancy Vivid Pink Internally Flawless diamond, sold for US$71.2 million in Hong Kong.
On May 16th their namesake earrings the ‘Apollo and Artemis Diamonds’ are the star attraction in Sotheby’s spring sale of Magnificent and Noble Jewels. This non-identical pair of brilliant rare diamonds, blue for a boy and pink for a girl, one Fancy Vivid Blue weighing 14.54 carats and internally flawless, the other Fancy Intense Pink and weighing 16.00 carats are the most important earrings ever to appear at auction. Offered separately as individual lots, ‘The Apollo Blue’ will be presented with an estimate of $38 – 50 million and ‘The Artemis Pink’ is estimated between $12.5 – 18 million but what a shame to separate the twin tears of the gods.
In April Sotheby’s set a new world auction record for any diamond or jewel when the Pink Star, a 59.60-carat oval mixed-cut Fancy Vivid Pink Internally Flawless diamond, sold for US$71.2 million in Hong Kong; not only was the sale price more than double the previous record for a fancy vivid pink diamond but it was also a new record for any lot ever sold at auction in Asia. The pink Star was acquired jeweller Chow Tai Fook, to commemorate the most prestigious jeweller in Greater China’s 88th anniversary, it is now known as The CTF Pink.