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American YouTuber and ambassador of Cartier jewels, Emma Chamberlain wore Maharaja of Patiala, Bhupinder Singh’s diamond choker at the Met Gala 2022. She paired the rare piece of jewellery with a white and beige Louis Vuitton outfit.

How did an ancient necklace end up on Chamberlain’s neck at the Met Gala?

Instagram profile Pop Culture God traced the timeline of the diamond.

It all began in 1889 when Maharaja Bhupinder Singh decided to buy the seventh-largest diamond in the world – the De Beers in 1889. The diamond was mined in 1888 from South Africa.

Many years later in 1925 when the Maharaja was 32, he travelled to Paris and brought along several trunks filled with precious diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, pearl, rubies, and other stones of the finest quality. These beauties were then set in traditional Indian settings. But the Maharaja now wanted a change.

He asked Maison Cartier, a French luxury jeweller to reset the De Beers diamond into the centrepiece of an “heirloom” ceremonial necklace.

The necklace was finally made in 1928 and was dubbed the Patiala Necklace. It had five chains made out of platinum, with at least 2930 diamonds and some Burmese rubies. Historically, this necklace can be called the most expensive piece of jewellery ever made and it would have cost at least $30 million to make it in its original form today.

In 1947, the necklace disappeared from the royal treasure during the accession of Patiala State into the newly independent Union of India.

Nobody knew where it went, whether it was stolen or sold or misplaced. The whereabouts of the necklace remained a mystery for 32 years after which a part of it finally reappeared at Sotheby’s auction in 1982 but it was just the diamond without the necklace. A part of a necklace was then seen in an antique shop in London.

When Cartier heard of it, they bought the necklace and restored the missing stones. The Maharaja’s necklace has been exhibited around the world since then.

Chamberlain being the ambassador of Cartier wore the Choker to the Met Gala this year. It didn’t sit well with social media users who demanded that the important historic piece be returned to the Sikhs instead of being made a fashion statement.

Met Gala is considered “fashion’s biggest night out” and is an annual fundraising gala held for the benefit of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York City.