Top jewelry pieces fall short of target prices at Christie’s auction derided by Jewish groups – by Jamey Keaten (Associated Press/San Diego Union Tribune – May 10, 2023)

GENEVA — A ruby ring and a diamond necklace fetched less than their pre-sale estimates at a Christie’s auction Wednesday of a vast jewelry collection of a late Austrian heiress that was bought with riches from a retail empire dating back to the Nazi era in Germany. Jewish groups criticized the auction.

The auction house defended the sale of some 700 pieces of jewelry. saying proceeds are going to charitable causes, including a Vienna art museum and medical research. The collection belonged to Heidi Horten, whose German husband built a retail empire starting in the 1930s. She died last year.

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What jewels will King Charles III use in his coronation? – by Kenichi Serino (PBS News Hour – May 5, 2023)

The world will be watching as King Charles III formally ascends the British throne in a coronation ceremony Saturday, just as his own mother, Elizabeth II, did 70 years ago. From monarch to monarch now passes the crown – actually, a few of them.

The jewels that adorn that regalia, including some of the largest diamonds in the world, are seen as some of Britain’s greatest treasures and help lend powerful symbolism to this ancient ritual. But their histories tell a more complicated story – some steeped in the legacy of colonialism.

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Trove of 1,000-year-old Viking coins unearthed by young girl in Denmark – by Sarah Do Couto (Global News – April 21, 2023)

When most people go metal detecting, they typically find a few dimes, pop cans and if they’re really lucky, a lost piece of jewelry. An unnamed young girl in Denmark found much more than that when she unearthed a hoard of nearly 300 silver coins believed to be over 1,000 years old while using a metal detector in a cornfield last autumn.

The coins, as per the Historical Museum of North Jutland in Denmark, were discovered close to the Fyrkat Viking fortress site near the town of Hobro, in northwestern part of the country.

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The View from England: Famous gems being both flaunted and hidden – by Chris Hinde (Northern Miner – April 20, 2023)

By now you should have received your invitation to the coronation of Charles III and his wife, Camilla, as king and queen of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms. If you are at Westminster Abbey on May 6 (or watching, having mislaid your invitation) you will see a sparkling parade, but not the Koh-i-noor diamond.

One of the world’s most famous gems, the 106 carat Koh-i-noor (Persian for ‘Mountain of Light’) will not be used by Camilla. Instead, Queen Mary’s crown will be modified using diamonds from Queen Elizabeth II’s personal collection, including three of the stones cut from the largest gem-quality diamond ever found (South Africa’s 3,106 carat Cullinan).

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Royal Canadian Mint still foresees vital role as demand for coins inevitably declines – by Amanda Stephenson (CTV News/Canadian Press – March 10, 2023)

CALGARY – Whether they’re rattling around in your car’s cup holder or have vanished permanently into the couch cushions, coins are easy to take for granted.So when the Royal Canadian Mint announced a round of layoffs last month at its Winnipeg facility, it was a reminder that the change jingling in our pockets doesn’t get there by magic.

Those loonies and toonies and quarters and dimes are produced by the Mint, a Crown corporation that produces all of Canada’s circulation coins out of one state-of-the-art facility in the Manitoba capital.

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Hidden camera reveals false claims some retailers make during diamond sales – by Katie Pedersen, Jeremy McDonald, Katie Swyers, Rosa Marchitelli (CBC News – February 17, 2023)

While shopping undercover at some of Canada’s top jewellers, Marketplace journalists came across sales pitches filled with false claims and inconsistent diamond grading reports, all of which could lead consumers to question whether they got what they paid for.

Last year, Canadians who purchased a diamond ring spent on average just over $4,300, according to Edahn Golan Diamond Research & Data Ltd. Marketplace journalists posed as secret shoppers to capture the sales pitch on hidden camera at three of Canada’s most popular value retail jewelry chains: Peoples Jewellers, Ben Moss Jewellers, and Michael Hill, visiting three locations for each retailer in Ontario and Alberta.

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Queen Consort Camilla will wear a recycled crown, without cursed diamond – by William Booth (Washington Post – February 14, 2023)

LONDON — Camilla, the Queen Consort, will wear a recycled crown at the coronation — and not the one showcasing the fabled Koh-i-Noor diamond, one of the world’s largest and most controversial gems, said by folklore to be cursed and by India to have been purloined.

When Camilla is crowned alongside her husband, the new King Charles III, at Westminster Abbey on May 6, she will wear the headpiece worn by Queen Mary at the 1911 coronation, Buckingham Palace said Tuesday.

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Police recover $1 million worth of gold and silver after teenagers get caught mid-heist in Toronto – by Anna Golubova (Kitco News – January 23, 2023)

(Kitco News) Police in Toronto recovered $967,811 (CAD $1.295 million) worth of precious metals after four teenage boys got caught “in the act” of robbing a store last month.

According to the police, three masked teenagers entered a precious metals store on Bloor Street in Toronto as the fourth suspect waited in the car. “On December 10, 2022, at 2:15 p.m., three masked suspects entered a precious metals store … with a firearm.

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Fire. Rainbow. Peacock. They’re All Opals. – by Janelle Conaway (New York Times – January 22, 2023)

Other precious gems are more valuable. ‘But in beauty,’ one miner said, ‘there is no stone that can be compared to it.’

LA TRINIDAD, Mexico — Héctor Montes has been around opals his entire life and has held a concession from the Mexican government to mine the stone for 40 years. But at 76, he said he could still feel a rush of adrenaline when he picked up a raw opal that had an especially promising glint — he never knows what it will look like in its finished state.

“There are no two alike,” he said of the stones he shapes and polishes. His workshop, strewn with rocks and lapidary equipment, is part of the family opal business that he runs in this community of about 2,500 residents in the central Mexican state of Querétaro, one of the two main regions in the country where opal is mined today.

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Tarnished nickel is determined to stay – by Jennifer Cole (Toronto Star- January 4, 2023)

Despite its diminished consumer shine, the nickel is determined to stay

In 2016 the financial group Desjardins suggested the Canadian nickel should be abolished. The gradual increase in the cost of living and decreased buying power of small coins made the nickel worthless to the consumer. And yet over five years later and the five-cent coin is hanging in there. Why is perplexing?

Once upon a time, way back in the middle of the last century, the coin found prestige and use at the five-and-dime store — the equivalent of today’s Dollar Store. Household items, toys and candy were all within the price point of the nickel.

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Roman Coins Thought for Centuries to Be Fakes Get a Fresh Appraisal – by April Rubin (New York Times – November 27, 2022)

New research suggests that the gold coins, which were found in 1713 and long dismissed as forgeries, may be authentic.

In 1713, a medals inspector documented the acquisition of eight gold Roman coins that had been buried in Transylvania. For centuries, experts believed them to be forgeries — and poorly made ones, at that.

The coins featured the image of an otherwise unknown leader and characteristics that differed from other mid-third century Roman coins. But now researchers who have re-examined the coins, which were in a collection at the University of Glasgow, say they may, in fact, be authentic.

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Shining a light on the world of coloured gems: Michael Valitutti reflects on the state of the jewellery industry – by Carolyn Gruske (CIM Magazine – October 25, 2022)

Although Michael Valitutti is a graduate gemologist working at Nathan Hennick & Co. Ltd., that title fails to describe exactly how involved he is with every step of the jewellery business. From visiting mines, to buying parcels of exotic gems at trade shows, to developing new processes to manipulate gemstones and metal, to selling finished pieces on a company website ( and on television shopping channels around the world, he takes a hands-on approach to the jewellery business.

CIM Magazine dropped by his office in Toronto to talk about the jewellery industry, the effects of COVID-19 on gemstone mining and the curious shopping habits of millennial Australians.

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Six of the Latest Trends in Bridal Jewelry – by Francesca Fearon ( – September 2022)

1. Vintage cut revival

Some may herald emerald-cut diamonds as this year’s most popular style for engagement rings, outranking other favorites like cushions and rounds, but it is interesting to see just how much designers are experimenting with older cuts. They are reviving vintage shapes like the marquise — a cut that dates back to the 18th century and is a favorite of Chicago jeweler Catherine Sarr at Almasika, who takes inspiration from its elliptical silhouette.

“It is a beautiful shape that I can follow naturally to create new settings, such as the east-west design I’m currently experimenting with,” she says.

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British Refiner Says It Can Track Gold From Mine to Jewelry – by Victoria Gomelsky (New York Times – March 24, 2022)

Tracing the path that gold takes from mine to market is notoriously difficult. The precious metal is mined around the world, but unless it remains segregated on its journey through the global supply chain — most crucially at the refining stage, where batches traditionally are mingled — there is no way to distinguish the origins of one gold bar or the gold in one bauble from another.

That explains both gold’s millennia-old history as an international form of currency — and what many say is its most conspicuous modern-day weakness. With gold mining practices coming under increasing scrutiny for their potential links to child labor, mercury pollution and other human rights and environmental abuses, the drumbeat of voices demanding full traceability in the gold supply chain has been growing louder.

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A Jewelry Hub Hopes Gentrification Won’t Overwhelm History – by Susanne Fowler (New York Times – August 25, 2021)

In Birmingham, England, artisans worry that luxury apartments and trendy cafes may push them out of an area where jewelers have been centered since the 18th century.

BIRMINGHAM, England — Kirsty Griffiths’ delight was evident as she held a pair of 22-karat gold bands, newly refashioned from her grandfather’s weighty wedding ring. “One for me and my own wedding and one for my auntie,” Ms. Griffiths, 31, said recently inside a cramped jewelry workshop here. “My granddad had left the original one to her.”

The rings now bear the anchor-shaped Birmingham Assay Office hallmark certifying the purity of the gold and the LL insignia of their maker, Lora Leedham. Ms. Leedham, 35, is part of a generation of independent craftspeople working alongside large heritage companies in the gentrifying neighborhood known as the Jewelry Quarter, a hub for makers since the 18th century.

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