The Awe-Inspiring Moussaieff Red Diamond

The Awe-Inspiring Moussaieff Red Diamond

The Moussaieff red diamond is one of the most famous diamonds in the world. As massive brilliant red diamond, this gem has a rich history and has kept the interest of the jewelry industry for years. Worth several millions of dollars, the Moussaieff red diamond enthralls interest in all who gaze up on its beauty. Read on to find out more about this one of a kind diamond and how rare it really is.

The History of the Moussaieff Red Diamond

Moussaieff Red Diamond
Image Source: Smithsonian Institution

The Moussaieff red diamond was found by a farmer in Brazil in the 1990s. At the time it was found, it weighed roughly more than 13 carats. It was originally named the red shield diamond, but would later be renamed after its buyer. Because of its sheer size and natural beauty, jewelry dealers wanted to buy it.

In London, one jewelry dealer became the lucky one. Shlomo Moussaieff is an Israeli born dealer and the creator of Moussaieff Jewellers Ltd. In 2001, Moussaieff purchased the diamond in London for an undisclosed amount of money. Renamed the Moussaieff red diamond, the massive diamond is still owned by Moussaieff Jewellers Ltd.

Before the diamond was purchased by Moussaieff, it was transformed from its rough natural shape. The William Goldberg Diamond Corporation was tasked to cut the diamond and expose it true brilliance. After its transformation, the gem was a brilliantly cut diamond weighing just over 5 carats. It was then purchased by Moussaieff a few years later.

The Moussaieff red diamond is considered the largest red diamond in the world. Because of this impressive title, it is considered priceless and remains in the Moussaieff’s collection.

Properties of Moussaieff Red Diamond


One of the first thing that people notice about the Moussiaeff is its dark red color. Many have compared it to a unique cranberry color. As one of the most famous red diamonds in existence, its sheer size and brilliant color make a true statement. According to diamond experts, this rich color is actually caused by a deformation during its formation.

The flawed structure affects how light hits the stone. The shape forced the light rays to bend and creates a dark red hue. This makes red diamonds even more unique from its flawless, pure and colorless diamond counterpart. Diamond experts explain that diamond colors can be affected by the smallest differences. For example, red or pink hues are formed by mild changes in the structure of electrons as they try to travel to the surface of the diamond.

Even different types of light can affect the color. For example, the Moussiaeff red diamond is said to look even more brilliant in daylight or candlelight. Florescent light can actually hinder the gem’s true brilliance. These type of diamonds are extremely rare and are not frequently discovered. This is why red diamonds are worth so much.

Size and shape

The Moussiaeff red diamond is even more unique because of its immense size. It features a triangular brilliant cut that helps the light rays show the gem’s true radiance. It weights 5.11 carats and is worth a whopping $20 million.


Another fact that makes the Moussiaeff red diamond even more unique is its class. As a type IIa diamond, it is so rare that it is estimated that only .01 percent of diamonds in existence are similar. In fact, there are only about twenty red diamonds that have been discovered in the world. Most type IIa diamonds are colorless, but a slight deformation in structure has developed a rich color.

Myths Surrounding Moussaieff Red Diamond

Moussaieff Red Diamond
Image Source:

While there are not really any myths or conspiracies specifically surrounding the Moussiaeff red diamond, there is rich history and folklore surrounding the red diamond in general. It is said that the very first red diamond was owned by the ruler of the Mughal Empire in the 1700s.

The story goes that the leader battled with his brothers for power, even executing some of them and allowing his own father to die in jail. As he came into power, he demanded to be brought the throne’s priceless blue diamond. Enraged and impatient, he grabbed the diamond. It is said that the diamond turned into a fiery red upon the angry leader’s touch. While this could just be a piece of folklore, it is still an interesting part of the red diamond’s rich historical presence.

It is just one of many mentions of the red diamond that has made throughout history. Colored diamonds have been held in high regard for many years and are still considered valuable.

Where Is the Moussaieff Red Diamond Today?

The Moussaieff red diamond is still owned by the wealthy Moussaieff family. This family is worth millions of dollars and has built a reputation of wealth and success. Involved in much more than just jewelry, this family is a symbol of a modern day wealth. The priceless red diamond is still in the family’s personal collection. However, it has made several public appearances. It has made two different trips to Washington D.C. to be on display at the Natural History Museum of the Smithsonian Institution.

Final Thoughts

The Moussaieff red diamond is one of the most famous diamonds in the world. Its sheer size is just one of the many reasons that makes it so unique. Its brilliant color is truly one of a kind and its rare nature makes it even more priceless. If you ever have the chance to see this famous diamond on display, make sure to take advantage.

Have you seen the Moussaieff red diamond in real life? Tell us about your experience in the comments below. We would love for you to join the conversation!