HORTENSE de BEAUHARNAIS

DAUGHTER OF AN EMPRESS
QUEEN OF HOLLAND
MOTHER OF AN EMPEROR

maandag 19 oktober 2009

The Hortensia Diamond

The Hortensia Diamond
This peach colored stone was named after Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland, who was Josephine's daughter and the step-daughter of Napoleon Bonaparte. The Hortensia had been part of the French Crown Jewels since Louis XIV bought it. You can see the Hortensia on display in the Louvre, Paris.
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The Hortensia Diamond is a 20 carat pale orangish-pink diamond added to the Crown Jewels of France by King Louis XIV. It owes its name to Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland, undoubtedly because she wore it. Hortense was the daughter of Empress Josephine, the step-daughter of Napoleon Bonaparte and the mother of Napoleon III. The Hortensia was among the jewels stolen from the Royal Treasury in September of 1792. One year later, a man named Depeyron disclosed (just prior to his execution) that he had hidden a bag containing gold and diamonds in the attic of an old house in the Halles district. The Hortensia was thus recovered together with The Regent Diamond and a number of other jewels. In between, in 1830, the diamond was stolen again, on this occasion from the Ministry of the Navy, but was quickly recovered. When the French Crown Jewels were sold in 1887, the Hortensia was one of the items excluded from the sale, along with the Regent, because of their historic and artistic interest. They were put in the Louvre.

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