Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Where is the Syamantaka Mani Today? (Part 1)

Diamonds at a Market in Surat
Photo Credit: CNN Go

by Angela Magnotti Andrews

This is a question that may not have an indisputable answer. Although unanswered questions and unsolved mysteries stick in my craw, I am learning to find joy in pondering the varied speculations surrounding such mysteries. The Syamantaka mani presents just such speculation and curiosity.

You’ve no doubt read my account of the exciting legend of the Syamantaka mani, gift from the sun god, Surya, to his faithful servant Satrajit. (If you haven’t, click the link to start at the beginning.)

If you’re anything like me, then by now you’re probably wondering where this stone ended up after leaving Kirshna’s hand millennia ago. I’ve read several different accounts that speak of the current whereabouts of the great stone and though I can offer you nothing more than educated theories, I hope you will enjoy them nonetheless.

Clearly, any stone claiming the famed title of Syamantaka mani must prove to hail from the great land of India, and, at least at one time, I would expect it to have been a large stone.

The legend asserts that the rays emanating from the stone were red in color and brilliant enough to obscure Satrajit’s face as he entered Dwarka. Though this account is surely embellished, it may lend some credibility to claims that the stone might possibly have been a corundum (a red ruby or even a blue sapphire) or a red-fluorescing diamond.

Being as there are very few large diamonds or rubies hailing from India, this narrows the pool of possible matches down quite a bit. In fact, there are only three jewels (all diamonds) which historians postulate might be the legendary Syamantaka: the Hope Diamond, the Koh-i-Nur, or the Great Mogul.

Follow me this way to read the argument that it is the Hope Diamond.
Follow me this way to read the argument that it is the Koh-i-Noor Diamond.
Follow me this way to read the argument that it might be the Great Mogul Diamond in some form. 

1. IndiaDivine. "Syamantaka or Shyamantaka??" Last modified September 10, 2005. Accessed August 15, 2012.
2. ________, Michael. "The Hope Diamond Design Change." The Natural Sapphire Company. Last Modified September 15, 2009. Accessed August 15, 2012.
3. Wikipedia. "Syamantaka." Accessed August 15, 2012.
4. India Child Name. "Meaning of Syamantak." Accessed August 15, 2012.
5. International Colored Gemstone Association. "Ruby." Accessed August 15, 2012.
6. Gem  Select. "World's Biggest Gems." Accessed August 15, 2012.
7. Wikipedia. "List of Diamonds." Accessed August 15, 2012.
8. Wikipedia. "Diamond Fund." Accessed August 15, 2012.

*Clip-art courtesy of The Graphics Fairy

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