Catherine II's Dazzling Crown Steals the Show at Diamond Fair


Whoever said replicas are cheap? Not quite this replica, set with pearls and a staggering 11,352 diamonds weighing over 1,180 carats. The polished diamonds are all sourced from Russia’s Alrosa rough.

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Modelled after the imperial crown of Catherine II of Russia, the longest-ruling female leader of Russia, the dazzling piece stole the show at the Israeli diamond market in Ramat Gan. The replica was the star of Israel's sixth International Diamond Week, and was on sale for a modest estimate of about US$20 million.

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According to owner Dmitry Moiseev of Kristall Smolensk, contacts with potential buyers have been established and they are “hopeful”. The original 5,000-diamond-encrusted crown is prohibited from leaving Russia.

Since 2012, The Crown replica has been exhibited throughout Russia and viewed by more than 400,000 people. From June 2016 to January 2017, the bejeweled creation was the star of Amsterdam’s Hermitage Museum, an exhibition specially designed to honor the life of Catherine the Great.

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