tiara time! the Noor-ol-Ai tiara

We must be in one of our “shoulda-been-a-History-professor” moments cos after the Hesse Aquamarines, We seem to be on a “historied-tiara” streak. The Noor-ol-Ain probably wins for the most exotic and intriguing backstory. After research, this fabulous gem resulted in a two-fer post!.

the Noor-ol-Ain (Eye of Light) Tiara with its sixty-carat pink diamond centerpiece

The Noor-ol-Ain Tiara is named for its eponymous, extraordinary centerpiece: a sixty-carat, oval brilliant-cut, pale pink diamond. This extremely rare color of diamond came from the Golconda mines in Northern India, almost certainly the Paritala-Kollur Mine in Andhara Pradesh. Noor-ol-Ain translates to “Light of the Eye” in Persian.

Empress Farah wedding Noor-ol-Ain tiaraThe Noor-ol-Ain Diamond became part of the Iranian Imperial collection after the Persian General Nader Shah invaded Northern India in 1739 and occupied Delhi. According to legend, the General returned the crown of India to the Mughal emperor and took all of their vast treasure in exchange. In addition to the Noor-ol-Ain, the General took the legendary Peacock Throne as well as the Darya-i-Noor and Koh-i-Noor diamonds. All of these spoils remain in the Iranian Crown Jewels to this day save the Koh-i-Noor, which, as we know, was set in the Queen Alexandra’s Coronation Crown.

The Noor-ol-Ain Tiara was commissioned in 1958 for future Empress Farah Pahlavi’s wedding to Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran. A modern design by Harry Winston, the platinum tiara’s spectacular center stone is surrounded by 324 pink, yellow and “clear” diamonds ranging in size from fourteen to nineteen carats. This dazzling corona is said to weigh about four-and-a-half pounds. Of interest, the huge centerpiece contributes only twelve grams (just over 0.4 ounces).

Darya-ye-Noor pink diamond

the Darya-i-Noor

After research in 1965, it was concluded that the Noor-ol-Ain was originally part of a colossal diamond that once graced the throne of the Mughal emperor. The other piece, the world’s largest pink diamond, was the Noor-ol-Ain’s travel buddy: the Darya-i-Noor. Weighing in at 182 carats (36 grams) and the same shade of pale pink, the “Sea of Light” is a free-form, tabular cut set as a broach with 457 diamonds and 4 rubies. Like the Noor-ol-Ain, it is also held at the National Treasury of Iran in Tehran. The fact that Farah got the smaller half of the pink “mega-rock” or whether pink was her favorite color regardless, the Empress Farah was one lucky bride, the headaches such a heavy headdress incurred regardless.

Since today is a Monday, We think you’ve all earned this: full wedding video footage with the Noor-ol-Ain in action. We love Movie Mondays, don’t you?

About ♔ la dauphiine ♔

Connecticut-based jewelry monger, history buff, Mets fan. On the hum-drum side, call me a lauded poet, novelist and ghost-writer. (That's right, I haunt prose.)
This entry was posted in diamond, persian empire (iran), tiara time!, weddings and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to tiara time! the Noor-ol-Ai tiara

  1. What fun footage! I always enjoy your wit and “shoulda-been-a-History-professor” moments. Brilliant like a diamond. Think pink, indeed. Four and a half pounds? Goodness. Pinching from the jaunty Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend tune, “Talk to me Harry Winston!” T. (Enjoy the week!)


  2. Clanmother says:

    Great post – as always!!! 🙂


  3. Angelyn says:

    The Empress Farah was always so striking in appearance. Bring on more tiaras, please.


  4. Pingback: tiara time, part II: the Portland Tiara | tiaras and trianon

  5. Titanic Buff says:

    That is some tiara. I can’t imagine wearing something like that for any length of time.


  6. Pingback: tiara time: Marie Thérèse’s Emerald and Diamond Tiara | tiaras and trianon

  7. Pingback: What Is The largest pink diamond in the world ? - DIAMANCIA

  8. Pingback: Farah’s Seven Emerald Tiara | tiaras and trianon

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