The Hancocks Journal: October

3.26ct D Internally Flawless Golconda Diamond Ring

Welcome to the October 2022 edition of The Hancocks Journal.

This month we’ve got a whiter than white diamond, richly coloured vibrant gems and the story of a Parisian jeweller who played an important but little-known part in the movie Pretty Woman.

We start with the Cartier ring pictured above which is set with a sensational 3.26ct oval Type IIa Golconda diamond.

All diamonds can be classified into two main categories which are referred to as ‘Types’, depending on the trace elements that are naturally present within the diamond. Each of these types is then subdivided further and the term Type IIA is used to denote the very purest diamonds.

This means there are no measurable impurities in the diamond of any kind which makes these stones exceptionally rare, they make up less than 2% of all gem quality diamonds found worldwide. Not only are these stones perfectly colourless but they also possess an exceptional level of transparency which enhances their beauty and allows the brilliance and fire of the diamond to be appreciated to the fullest.

Famous examples of Type IIA diamonds include the Koh-i-Noor and the Cullinan, which are part of the Crown Jewels, as well as the Krupp diamond which Richard Burton bought for Elizabeth Taylor and was later renamed the Elizabeth Taylor Diamond.

For more details of this beautiful Cartier ring just click here.

We hope you enjoy this selection of recent acquisitions and Hancocks jewels. As ever, our full collection is available to view in our Burlington Arcade boutique and on our website and our Instagram page is updated daily, all links are at the end of this newsletter.


Burmese Ruby Ring

We don’t say this lightly but sometimes, just sometimes, diamonds are superfluous to requirements. Controversial we know, especially given that diamonds are one of our specialist subjects, but just occasionally we find a sumptuous coloured gem like this 2.02ct Burmese ruby and know that what it really needs is more of the same to do it justice. So we had a set of small rubies specially cut to fit these elegant tapering shoulders and the result is a true celebration of flaming red colour enhanced only by 18ct gold. Rubies mined in Burma have long been held as the absolute ideal in terms of colour, they are an exceptionally beautiful rich deep red with neither too much brown nor pink in them. This ruby surely exemplifies this in the most beautiful way


Emerald and Diamond Earrings

These stunning Victorian emerald and diamond drop earrings were made circa 1860. They are set with an estimated 8.5ct of intensely coloured and deeply saturated vibrant Colombian emeralds. Stones from this location, in particular the mining areas of Muzo, Coscuez and Chivor are widely regarded to be the most beautiful and intense in colour with a purity of green unmatched by those from any other source. The emeralds in these earrings are enhanced with diamonds which are bright and lively and benefit from their open back settings. The fine articulation means the drops move freely and catch the light beautifully with the movement of the wearer. A very special pair of earrings that are sure to become a treasured heirloom jewel.

Cat and Mouse Games

Recent Additions to The Hancocks Menagerie.

We’ve had several new friends come to join us recently, so we thought we’d introduce a few of them here. Our sweet little mouse is French and very endearing but is wisely keeping those big eyes peeled for sneaky approaches from out resident cat.

Chat Malicieux was made by Van Cleef & Arpels for their ‘Le Bestiaire’ collection and his cheeky wink makes us think he’s likely to get up to mischief, just as his name suggests!

Lastly, we have our adorable Cartier puppy, who will hopefully keep Le Chat in line but we’re not sure we fancy his chances.

All of them are on our website, click the image to see their full details and more images.

Maker Spotlight


18ct Gold Overlapping Hearts Bracelet c.1980s

In what is arguably one of the most famous movie scenes involving jewellery, Pretty Woman’s Richard Gere presents Julia Roberts with a blue velvet jewel box. He opens it and as she goes to touch the necklace inside, he pretends to snap the box closed on her fingers. What is less well known is that the magnificent ruby and diamond necklace nestled inside that box was made by Fred.

Born in 1908 to French parents who had emigrated to Argentina, Fred Samuel grew up in the vibrant city of Buenos Aires. No doubt influenced by his father’s profession as a gem dealer, Fred moved to France aged 16 to study jewellery.

Opening his first boutique in 1936 he would go on to enjoy great success. He counted stars of the silver screen as well as Royalty amongst his clients but not before World War II almost ended the business before it had really begun.

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