Smithsonian displays world’s largest gem aquamarine, the Dom Pedro

What: 

Smithsonian displays world’s largest gem aquamarine, the Dom Pedro

When: 

Thursday, December 6, 2012 – 11:00am12:00pm

Where: 

Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History
10th Street and Constitution Avenue N.W.
On the second floor in The Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals

The National Museum of Natural History will unveil the Dom Pedro Aquamarine, the largest single piece of cut-gem aquamarine in the world in the Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals. Jane M. Mitchell and Jeffery S. Bland donated the piece.

Mined from a Brazilian pegmatite in the late 1980s, the magnificent aquamarine was named for Brazil’s first two emperors, Dom Pedro Primeiro and his son, Dom Pedro Segundo. Before cutting, the portion of the beryl crystal from which the obelisk-shaped gem was fashioned measured 23.25 inches long and weighed nearly 60 pounds. The obelisk, designed by world-renowned gem artist Bernd Munsteiner, stands 14 inches tall, measures 4 inches across the base and weighs in at 10,363 carats or 4.6 pounds. The Dom Pedro is the largest cut-and-polished gem aquamarine known.

The Dom Pedro joins the Smithsonian’s famous gem and mineral collection of more than 10,000 gems and 350,000 mineral specimens. The Smithsonian’s gem and mineral collection is one of the largest of its kind. Space is limited. Camera crews must RSVP to Kelly Carnes at carnesk@si.edu in advance.

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SI-532-2012


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