Lot 2078. A pair of conch pearl and diamond ear pendants. Estimate HKD 380,000 - 580,000 (USD 48,640 - 74,240). Lot sold HKD 472,000 (USD 60,416) © Poly Auction Hong Kong Limited.

Each suspending five drop-shaped conch pearls, to the geometric-shaped diamond and onyx surmount, mounted in 18K gold, approximately 4.8 cm long 

Throughout history, natural pearl, with its warm inner glow and shimmering iridescence, has been one of the most highly prized and sought-after gems, just like this 18.82 carat pearl LOT 2077 presents. Natural pearls are formed in the wild, without any human intervention of any kind. They are composed entirely of nacre which is a combination of aragonite or calcite with an organic binder called conchiolin. The larger the pearl, the more layers of nacre has been added, this process of nacre building takes years. Pearls are so rare they are literally one in a million, only one in 10,000 wild oysters will produce a natural saltwater pearl and of those pearls, only a tenth will produce a pearl of gem quality.

LOT 2078 is mounted with ten well-matched graduated conch pearl. Like natural pearl’s organic origin, conch pearls are a calcareous concretion produced by the Queen Conch mollusk. Living in the warm tropical waters of the Caribbean and Florida, the finest examples display a wave-like “flame” structure on their surface and have a creamy, porcelain-like appearance and unique shimmer. Different to nacreous pearls, there are very few recorded instances of the successful cultivation of conch pearls, thus all conch pearls are natural. With the possibility of finding a conch pearl being one in 50,000, and with less than a one in ten chance that the pearl will be gem quality, conch pearls are considered very rare indeed.  

Poly Auction. Magnificent Jewels, 2 October 2017 1:30pm, Grand Hyatt Hong Kong