There are many myths surrounding the discovery of sapphires in Kashmir. Amongst the most amusing is that related by the explorer Albert Ramsay in 1934.
He wrote, 'It seemed that in the old days a band of men with beards dyed red found some blue stones exposed by a landslide in the hills of Kashmir. These men had come from Afghanistan, part of a mule caravan on its way to Delhi. The stones, as curiousities, were put away in the bags on one of the mules, and then, in Delhi, they were traded for salt. Thereafter they were sold to someone who recognized them to be rough sapphires: and they were resold and resold and resold, until finally, in Calcutta, they brought in rupees a price which was equal to $400,000. The news of this transaction got back to the Maharajah of that time, who discovered that the sapphires had been picked up in his own Kashmir hills. In great wrath he went to Calcutta and demanded them. Every single transaction in the long train had to be undone. The man who had sold the sapphires gave back the $400,000, and so it went back through many towns, until, at Delhi, a merchant received back a few bags of salt. Today, I should think those sapphires are worth $3,000,000'.
Whether or not there is truth in this anecdote, its mention of a landslide has come to be the most accepted version for the discovery of these beautiful sapphires. Historians believe the event to have occurred at some time between 1879 and 1882 in the Kudi Valley, near the hamlet of Sumjam (Soomjam) in the Padar (Paddar) region of Kashmir in the Himalayas. By 1882, the stones began to appear on the Indian market in Simla.
While there are some fine Kashmir stones seen on the market today, their supply is very limited and most of them rarely exceed 5 carats. The 27.54 carat gem ofered for sale is exceptional not only for it's impressive size but also for it's rich, velvety, cornflower blue colour that is observed only in the finest of Kashmir sapphires.