Lesotho is shining once again. The worlds fifth largest diamond has recently been found at the Letseng Mine and is the largest to date in Lesotho’s history. This 6.4-ounce rough stone is about the size of two golf balls.
The 910-carat gem diamond is the largest discovered at the mine since 2006 when the 603-carat Lesotho Promise was dug up. The diamond belongs to a category that represents less than 1% of all mined diamonds in the world and is more valuable (EWN;2018). This gem is a D-color, type-IIa stone, meaning it is completely colourless and has no noticeable nitrogen or boron impurities.
This is not the first mega-diamond extracted from the mine. According to Gem Diamonds, since it took over the mine 12 years ago, it has recovered seven other diamonds sizing in at or above 299 carats. However, this find is of particular note for the mine. “[T]his exceptional top quality diamond is the largest to be mined to date,” explains Clifford Elphick, company CEO (Smithsonian;2018).
According to a mining analyst at Liberum Capital, the diamond could be worth as much as $40 million. It is yet to go on sale.