A massive 510 kilogram, 2.5 million carat, star sapphire cluster has been found in a gem traders backyard while workmen were digging a well. The stone was found in the gem rich town of Ratnapura.
The stone is pale blue in colour. Experts have assessed the value of this stone to be over US$100 million (AU$130 million).
The stone has been named the Serendipity Sapphire.
The stone was found in the backyard of a third generation gem trader in Ratnapura. The gem trader said that while the stone was cleaned, some smaller stones fell out of the cluster, and they were found to be high quality star sapphires.
Ratnapura means the city of gems in local Sinhalese language. Ratnapura is one of the richest sources of gems in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka produces some of the best quality coloured gem stones in the world. It is famous for the Ceylon Blue sapphire. Sri Lanka exports around $500 million worth of gem stones annually.
It is said that this cluster formed around 400 million years ago according to a BBC interview with a renowned gemmologist Dr Gamini Zoyza.
The Gem and Jewellery trade in Sri Lanka are hoping that the Serendipity Sapphire will place the spotlight back on Sri Lanka and the beautiful and rare gemstones it has to offer.