Appropriation of Kohinoor Diamond & Timur Ruby

Thousands of years ago, the Koh-i-Noor Diamond was found sifted from India’s Alluvial mines. It means “Mountain of Light” in the Persian language. Not much is known about where the Timur Ruby was found but it is actually a spinel. It is associated with Timur, the founder of the Timurid empire. Like the Koh-i-Noor diamond, it exchanged hands multiple times. It isn’t definite where the diamond or ruby came from, but for both, the first written record comes from 1628, when Mughal Ruler Shah Jahan commissioned a magnificent throne to be created. The throne was adorned with the Timur Ruby and the Koh-i-Noor Diamond. Both the ruby and diamond had exchanged hands multiple times, eventually coming to Sikh ruler Ranjit Singh. After his death in 1839, the throne passed between four people in four years. Eventually, the stone made its way to his 10-year-old son, Duleep Singh. In 1849, after imprisoning his mother, the British forced Duleep to sign a legal document modifying the Treaty of Lahore and insisted that Duleep give away the Koh-i-Noor, Timur Diamond, and all claims to power over the Punjab state.

Around the same time as this event, the novella, "The Half-Caste; An Old Governess's Tale" was written in 1851 by Dinah Mulock Craig. In the novella, Zillah's father is suspected to have stolen a diamond ring. This is a potential reference to the theft of the Koh-i-Noor diamond.


Chronological table

Displaying 1 - 2 of 2
Date Event Created by Associated Places
circa. 1628

First written record of the Diamond and the Ruby

First written record of the Diamond and the Ruby

Zahra Kanji
1849 to 1851

Appropriation of Koh-i-Noor Diamond & Timur Ruby

Appropriation of Koh-i-Noor Diamond & Timur Ruby. The Koh-i-Noor diamond was exhibited at the Great Exhibition of 1851. It was recut because people found it difficult to believe that it was more than a piece of glass.

Zahra Kanji