There are few things as enduring as a diamond. And the Hope Diamond at the Smithsonian Institutionâ€™s National Museum of Natural History is one of the most famous. But even icons need a little sprucing up from time to time.
To celebrate the golden anniversary of the museumâ€™s acquisition of the 45.52 karat blue diamond, the jewelers at Harry Winston will give it a new setting meant to depict the concept of America hope, the Smithsonian announced last week. And the American public gets to decide which design the rock will rock.
The resetting of the stone is part of a Smithsonian Channel documentary about the blue diamondâ€™s history, â€œMystery of the Hope Diamond,â€ which will air in March.
And a fascinating history it has. According to legend, there is a curse that has led to tragedy for anyone who has owned the stone. As a result some believe the diamondâ€™s curse is connected to the fall of the French monarchy and the many tragedies in the life the American socialite Evalyn Walsh McLean, who owned it before it was sold to Harry Winston in 1949. Winston donated the stone to the Smithsonian in 1958.
You can vote on the new setting here. Voting ends Sept. 7. But Hope Diamond purists, do not despair. The resetting of the stone is only temporary. It will return to its current setting by the end of 2010.