Some South Africans are calling for Britain to return the world’s largest diamond, known as the Star of Africa, which is set in the royal sceptre that King Charles III held at his coronation on Saturday.
The diamond, which weighs 530 carats, was discovered in South Africa in 1905 and presented to the British monarchy by the colonial government in the country, which was then under British rule.
Now amid a global conversation about returning artwork and artefacts that were pillaged during colonial times, some South Africans are calling for the diamond to be brought back.
Officially known as Cullinan I, the diamond in the sceptre was cut from the Cullinan diamond, a 3,100 carat stone that was mined near Pretoria.
A smaller diamond cut from the same stone, known as Cullinan II, is set in the Imperial State Crown which is worn by British monarchs on ceremonial occasions. Along with the sceptre, it is kept with the other crown jewels in the Tower of London.
A replica of the whole Cullinan diamond, which is about the size of a man’s fist, is displayed at the Cape Town Diamond Museum.