As sons and daughters around the world asked not what their dads could do for them but what they could do for their dads on Fathers’ Day this weekend past, Professional Jeweller looks back in history at what one very generous father gifted his son.
The son was Yadavindra Singh, who was the Maharaja of Patiala from 1938 to 1974 and a keen cricketer in his spare time, and the gift was what became known as the Patiala necklace.
The necklace was commissioned by Maharaja Bhupinder Singh in 1928 and made by Cartier with a huge 234.65ct De Beers yellow diamond set in the centre, the seventh largest in the world.
At the end of the Raj the necklace was lost, but it reappeared in 1998 in a second-hand jewellery shop in London. All the major stones were missing but Cartier bought back the necklace regardless and spent four years restoring it, replacing the lost stones with synthetics.
This article was taken from the June 2012 issue of Professional Jeweller magazine. To read a digital version of this issue click here.