|New york auction 2019 Mogul and Maharajah;s jewelsbdc-tv.com|
India’s rich culture of jewellery ornaments and interest in gemstones are due to easy access to mineral resources. Naturally endowed with vast natural resources, gold and gem encrusted jewels have been known to Indians for centuries. The mines of Golconda (actually now defunct Kollur mines in the alluvial beds of the Krishna river) yielded the highest grade of diamonds in the past. They produced famous diamonds like Kohi-noor, Orlov, Hope, etc; the Himalayan region close to Kashmir once produced the rarest and most beautiful sapphires; quality emeralds arrived in IndiaJewellery in the Mogul tradition was an integral aspect of articulating authority, with eyewitness accounts from the height of the Mogul Empire revealing the extent to which rulers valued gems for their rarity, physical properties and provenance.
from Colombia through commercial exchange via the Portuguese-controlled ports of Goa. Expensive jewellery in the Mogul tradition was a symbol of authority and regal power that gave them respect. Th rulers, including Maharajahs valued gems for their physical attributes, color, luster, brilliance, flaw free, etc. Philosophically speaking, in this transient world, permanency has no relevance - be it political power, glory, wealth, etc. In particular, the wealth of the rich and famous is no exception . That what is yours may not be
The ex-rulers once had absolute attachment towards possessions and had keen and sustained desire to accumulate and acquire more and more, not realizing that one day they could either become a serious impediment in life or slip past their grip on them. Once an obsessive mind, now has to be content with less.
In the case of the Nizam family of erstwhile Hyderabad state, South India, once the richest family in the world according to the Time magazine it was a distressing experience when watching online auction their grandfather's famed jewels at Christie's in New York on July 19th 2019. For the first time, the descendants of Nizam saw a trove of amazing jewels being sold in a far-off land and they were not aware the jewels belonged to their grand father.
Numerous pieces from the treasure house of Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan, the last ruler of Hyderabad, attracted the attention of many rich people in the US and other countries. The 7th Nizam, passed away in 1967 and was known to have one of the best jewelry collections in the world. It is quite obvious, the family members had mixed feelings of pride and pain over the cherished jewelry (of their grand father), a symbol of their royal power, culture, and legacy.
However, Nawab Najaf Ali Khan said, "I was feeling happy that each and every piece of my grandfather's collection is priceless and is valued so much by art connoisseurs around the world. They were being sold for 10 to 15 times more than their base price."
The following are the important features of this popular auction by Christie's, New York:
01. Almost 400 pieces of the most impressive Mogul-era Indian jewels were auctioned under 'Maharajas & Mughal Magnificence' sale.
02. The auctioned lots span 500 years and showcase the culture and tradition of Indian jeweled arts from the Mogul Empire (founded in 1526) and the age of the Maharajas to present day.
03. The auction by the 253 year old firm Christie's fetched as much as $109,271,875 (about Rs 700 crore), huge sum.
04. According to the famous auction house Christie's, it was the highest total for any auction of Indian art and Mughal jeweled objects and second highest for a private jewellery auction.
05. Earlier the auction house anticipated the sale could rank as one of its most high-profile, and highest-grossing, jewelry auctions reminiscent of the evening auction of Hollywood actress Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry, which totaled more than $100 million.
06. Among the auctioned lots included amazing and stunning items such as necklaces, the Imperial Spinel necklace and a diamond rivière necklace containing nearly 200 carats of Golconda stones (mined near Krishna river, Andhra).
07. Two interesting pieces went under the hammer and it was the sale of two notable diamonds: the Arcot II, one of the famed Arcot diamonds given to Queen Charlotte, wife of King George III, by Muhammad Ali Wallajah, Nawab of Arcot (of Tamil Nadu, S. India) in the 1700s on her visit to India, and the “Mirror of Paradise,” a Golconda diamond.
08. A ceremonial sword of the Nizam fetched $1,935,000 (Rs 13.4 crore) while 'The Mirror of Paradise', a 52.58 carat rectangular cut-diamond went for $6,517,500 (about Rs 45 crore).
09. The lots span 500 years and showcase the culture of Indian jeweled arts from the Mogul period founded in 1526 and the age of the Maharajashs to present day.
Presented below are some of the rare brilliant Indian jewels that were sold at the New York auction, 2019:
|Patiala Ruby Choker nationaljeweler.com|
|Imperial Spinel Necklace nationaljeweler.com|
Above image: The Imperial Spinel Necklace comes from North India and contains spinel dating from the early 1600s to mid-1700s. It features Persian inscriptions of Mughal rulers’ names and the dates of their reigns.