The Curse of the Hope Diamond
Have you ever heard of a 631 year old diamond that’s traveled the world, worth, millions, and is considered to be fatally cursed? The Hope Diamond, a blue beauty that, over its lifetime has been permanently cut into a 45-carat stone, is currently on display at the Smithsonian Institute. Unlike most gems, the Hope Diamond’s history is complicated, and has the reputation of being cursed.The Hope Diamond was first bought in its full 112 3/16-carats by a French merchant, Jean Baptiste Tavernier in the early 1600s, who later sold it to King Louis XIV of France.
The king had it cut, calling his new gem the “French Blue.” King Louis and his wife were later imprisoned and beheaded during the French Revolution. The prized diamond was stolen.Could this be the curse? The whereabouts of the French Blue were unknown until the Hope family purchased the diamond in England during the 1800s. Not long after, Lord Francis Hope’s wife left him and due to debt the diamond was sold to Evalyn McLean.
Even though she cut it down to a pendant diamond necklace, it still bore the name of the Hope Diamond. Her favorite “good luck” necklace soon turned her life sour. Mrs. McLean’s first son died in a car crash at the age of nine, her daughter, at 25, committed suicide, and her husband was put into a mental institute and died there. Soon after her death, the diamond was mailed by James Todd to its present home in Washington D.
C. Not a year after he suffered a crushed leg, a head injury twice, and his wife died of a heart attack. Todd’s dog was strangled by its leash, not to mention the fire that partially burned his house down.The Hope Diamond’s original origins are rumored to have been in India, stolen in the 1600s from a sacred Hindu goddess and vowed cursed by her priests, before Tavernier bought it. Could this diamond really be cursed? Were all these deaths and accidents due to an encounter with it? That decision is up to you, as the Hope Diamond’s strange curse and bloody history are still a mystery today.