It was a real diamond in the rough.
A British woman nearly missed out on an unexpected life gain after throwing in nearly $3 million because she thought it was fake.
The 70-year-old owner, who chose to remain anonymous, found the sterling-sized diamond while cleaning her Northumberland home. And although the old woman couldn’t remember where or when she bought it, the boxed rat was reported to have often “bought trinkets” at garage sales.
“She’s always visited car trunk sales and bought trinkets,” said auctioneer Mark Lane of Fittonby Auctions in North Shields. He told the BBC From a serendipitous discovery. “But she never thought it was a real diamond.”
Lynn said the retiree mistook the fake jewelry because it was “placed in a box with her wedding ring and a number of low-value jewelry”. She was about to put the luxury rock “in the trash,” when a neighbor suggested taking things to Lin Company for evaluation.
The BBC reported that the auctioneer initially thought the “big stone” consisted of cubic zirconia – a synthetic stone often used to imitate diamonds – so he kept it on his desk for several days.
Fortunately, Lin eventually put the stone into a diamond tester, and then sent it to Fittonby Associates in London. The hidden wealth holder was later endorsed by experts in Antwerp, Belgium, who confirmed that it was 34 karat – making it the most valuable item an appraiser ever obtained.
“Color, clarity, size…to find a 34-carat diamond out of range,” gushed the diamond lane, valued at approximately $2,741,520.
The diamonds are stored in London’s Hatton Garden jewelry district, where they will remain until auctioned on November 30.
In other fortunes that nearly missed in May, a Massachusetts woman nearly tossed a million dollar lottery ticket — but an honest little store owner made sure she got paid.