Flawless 163-carat diamond reaps $44.5 million in Geneva auction

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media caption The 163 carat diamond was the largest of its kind to go under the hammer

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption The 163 carat diamond was the largest of its kind to go under the hammer

The flawless 163-carat clear diamond, the centrepiece of an asymmetric gem-studded necklace, was the largest of its kind ever auctioned.

Some of the world's rarest and most valuable gemstones are up for auction, they all command multi-million dollar price tags, but there is one particular diamond that has become the talk of the town.

The necklace, named The Art of de Grisogono, sold for $33.5m - $29.5m plus $4m premium - exceeding pre-sale predictions of $30m.

This stone discovered a year ago in Angola is so pure and so large that even Christie's jewellery director David Warren can't contain his enthusiasm. The stone was the largest of its kind ever auctioned.

The finished piece is made from white gold, diamond and emeralds.

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And it graced the crown of Napoleon I, Napoleon III and Empress Eugenie, among others.

Christie's said the seller was a private collector, but did not reveal their identity.

Tuesday's sale marked the first time the diamond appeared at auction in 130 years.

The Geneva autumn auction season concludes on Wednesday, when Sotheby's will auction a pink diamond worth as much as $US30 million.

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