By Yaĝé Enigmus
One bespoke emerald ring that stands out for its incredible centre stone and unique design is the Stotesbury Emerald ring. The Stotesbury Emerald is a magnificent 34.40 carat hexagon-cut Colombian emerald that has taken a wondrous journey through multiple collections and multiple pieces of jewelry before being set into its current ring mount. Over a hundred years ago in 1908, the famous jeweller Pierre Cartier set this supreme gem into a necklace for jewellery enthusiast Evalyn Walsh McLean, heiress to the Camp Bird Gold Mine fortune. Two years later in 1910, Cartier gave a viewing of the Hope Diamond to McLean, who quickly desired to own the gem and eventually acquired it on January 28th, 1911. It is said that McLean used the emerald necklace that she had purchased in 1908 to cover part of the cost of the Hope Diamond after a court dispute with Cartier in 1912 which resulted in the official transfer of the Diamond’s ownership to McLean and the Emerald’s ownership to Cartier. Years later, in 1926, Cartier was commissioned by Eva Stotesbury, wife of J.P. Morgan’s banking partner Edward T. Stotesbury, to refashion an emerald and diamond tiara into a smaller tiara and earrings accompanied by a matching necklace. Cartier used the emerald that was previously owned by Evalyn Walsh McLean as the necklace’s centre stone in this new suite of jewelry, after which the stone took on Stotesbury’s name. In 1946, the emerald jewellery suite was sold to Harry Winston, who then set the Stotesbury Emerald into the ring which currently holds the gem. This phenomenal ring features a stylized hexagonal platinum prong setting haloed by six carats of pear-shaped diamonds set with their points facing the Emerald. Winston sold the ring in 1947 to Bonfils Stanton, heiress to the Denver Post fortune, who owned it until 1971 when it changed hands again. The new owner was in possession of the ring until April 25th, 2017 when it was sold at the Magnificent Jewels auction held by Sotheby’s in New York City for the price of $996,500. Truly a ring for the ages, the Stotesbury Emerald ring is a prime demonstration of an emerald’s ability to stand the test of time.
An emerald ring that certainly holds one of the world’s great gems is the duPont Emerald ring. Originally owned by Jessie duPont as part of her jewellery collection, the platinum ring was crafted by Tiffany & Co. in 1920, and features a four part rectangular semi-bezel setting accented with old mine-cut diamonds along the shank. The duPont Emerald is a stunning 9.11 carat baguette-shaped Colombian emerald with fantastic colour and no clarity enhancement. The ring remained in duPont’s collection until her death in 1970 when it was donated to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Eventually the Museum decided to put the ring up for auction to fund future acquisitions, and it was sold for $1,635,000 on December 10th, 2019 as part of the Magnificent Jewels auction held by Christie’s New York.
These emerald rings are some of the most spectacular pieces of bespoke jewelry in the world, and they serve as strong reminders of the emerald’s universal charm. Very few rings of this stature exist, and it is the emeralds in them that make these rings timeless masterpieces.
Here are more of our favourite emerald rings from the Skyjems catalog:
© Yaĝé Enigmus a.k.a. Kevin Back