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Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend: Woman Learns Her Flea Market Find Is An Auction-Worthy Gem

Some items can be extremely undervalued in life. While it’s not as common as we’d like, there are times when people own things without having a clue about how much their possessions are truly worth. Antique dealers and resellers make a living off this exact thing and train their eyes to spot bargains at every corner. A diamond in the rough, if you will.

In this story, that is exactly what happens, but not by a trained dealer or eagle-eyed reseller. No, the lucky person was an ordinary woman who just so happened to catch a glimpse of a unique sparkling diamond that glimmered amongst scrap and fake jewelry.

So how much profit did the anonymous woman make, and did she even want to sell it for a bargain? Find out below.

Shocked Beyond Words

The anonymous woman stood glassy-eyed in front of the appraiser. She was caught completely off guard and had to simply stand and stare to take in what she had just been told. Thousands of thoughts rushed through her head. Was she joking? Had she made a mistake? Is this real?

It was certainly real, and the unnamed lady was about to be in for an enormous surprise. This was the first time in her life that she had experienced anything even remotely like this, and from the looks of it, the appraiser was in exactly the same boat. Neither of them knew how to act…

A Leisurely Stroll

The unlikely series of events started on a mundane day when the anonymous woman was simply taking her weekly stroll through the marketplace. She had walked through the stalls countless times and had never found anything worthwhile, but she still looked around every time she passed by.

The woman was only carrying a small amount of change in her pockets, so she knew she would have to be wise and patient if she wanted to leave with something decent. But there was no rush. If she didn’t buy something that day, she could always come back again next week.

Catching Her Eye

She was midway through her walk through Middlesex Hospital Flea market when she realized that everything just looked like junk. It was cheap, plastic, and mostly worn out or broken. Her trip out was beginning to look pretty pointless, so she started to pick up the pace.

She was beginning to lose hope and considered leaving the market after perusing through the next few stalls, but that was when a particular shop in the market caught her eye. The woman happened to glance upon a jewelry stand, and something just drew her to it.

Standing Out from the Crowd

As the lady made her way toward the alluring stall, she saw a plethora of cheap items of jewelry and began to question why she had felt such a sudden urge to check it out. She was casually sifting through the items when she finally found what she was looking for…

An enormous jewel lay there, dazzling beams of light into the corner of her eye. It seemed completely out of place, and she even questioned how no one else had spotted it. It finally dawned on her that destiny was telling her to buy the ring.

Buying Something Nice

The lady only approached the stall to find something pretty to buy for herself. She just wanted to treat herself to something nice. Seeing the ring, she realized that she valued it much more than the current owners. She knew she needed it.

It was surrounded by bits of junk and rubbish, and it almost angered her that the stall worker had just thrown it with the other stuff. She picked up the ring and inspected it. She was drawn to it but noticed something wasn’t quite right.

A Sign of Hope

The ring was far cheaper than she would have assumed, and she even had enough to buy it on the spot, with her minimal change in hand. The jewel sat on an incredible mount and was pretty huge itself. The woman quickly decided it was fake, but she didn’t care.

Even if it wasn’t real, she loved the look of it, and it served as a reminder and a good luck charm. Eventually, she would be able to take it off and replace it with a real jewel of that size.

Wearing it Day and Night

The woman completed her purchase and left $13 lighter, but with a special piece of jewelry to show for it. Walking away from the stall, she immediately put on the ring and fell in love with it, wearing it day and night for years

The ring was one of her most prized possessions and even though she knew it wasn’t worth a lot, it made her feel like a princess. One day, after 30 years of wearing the ring, the woman took a trip to the store that completely changed everything…

Mysterious Stranger

One day, the woman was walking through London on a nice sunny day when she took a quick diversion to the local store. The woman swiftly made her way through the shop and queued up at the counter, but an eerie feeling washed over her.

The woman’s hair stood up on the back of her neck and she became convinced that she was being watched, or more accurately, studied. She scanned the area, trying to pin down the source of her emotions. Sadly, her intuition was right.

Watching Her Hand

A mysterious and creepy-looking stranger was standing nearby, watching her hand intently. She felt uncomfortable, but for now, tried to move on. She hurried through the store, deciding that if he was out of sight, then he was out of mind.

What the woman did not realize, though, was that he wasn’t going to forget about her or her ring anytime soon. In fact, the mysterious man did not let her out of his sight for the whole duration of her visit.

Was He Following?

The lady looked over again and was still greeted by the same eerie sight of him staring at her hand. This time she decided to rush through the checkout, pay for her things and dart straight for the exit. But was he still following her?

As she approached the doors, she could see from the corner of her eye that the man was still following her. Alarm bells started ringing in her head and she began questioning every move he made. Just what did he want?

Making a Decision

The woman immediately wanted to run and get as far away as she possibly could from this man, but she knew she couldn’t get help yet as she wasn’t even 100% sure that she was in trouble. She hastily walked towards her car and tried losing him in the crowd, but to no avail.

With every passing second, the woman was becoming more and more positive that he was stalking her for some reason, but why? She took another glance to make sure she wasn’t just being paranoid, but then she noticed something that terrified her.

Closing the Gap

The distance between the two of them was now much shorter, he had closed the gap quite significantly and was now within striking distance. All her doubts quickly left her mind as she felt him coming up behind her, she was now entering fight or flight.

The woman prepared herself as she felt him come even closer behind her; he was practically breathing down her neck at this point. She finally turned to confront him and ask what he was doing, but the man spoke, and she felt lost.

Intimidating

She felt trapped and alone now, stuck between her car and this man, feeling like she had no place to run; she had to listen to the man’s request. He finally admitted that he had followed her because of the ring she was wearing, and he then confused her even further by asking a question.

The man asked about the ring she was wearing, and where she got it from; however, it didn’t end there. He went on to ask her for a closer look, and there was something about his face and tone of voice that oozed with greed and danger.

Getting Away

The woman had a sudden boost of adrenaline-filled confidence and managed to widen the gap between them. She didn’t appreciate how intimidating it was that he silently followed her to her car, and she assumed it was some kind of scam or theft attempt.

She pushed him aside and began to just walk away, hoping that that would be the end of it. However, she was wrong. The man shouted after her, questioning it even more; he shouted things like “where did you get that” but the woman just carried on walking.

Paranoid or Superstitious?

The next morning the woman was in a rush to leave the house. Every single morning, she would put on her talisman ring before leaving the house; it had become like a ritual. She did so without fail every day, except this particular one.

She was too worked up from the events of the previous day that she forgot to put her ring on. Unfortunately, she was in such a rush that she didn’t realize her mistake until it was much too late, and she was already on her commute to work.

Panicked

She made it all the way to her daily train before she became aware of her mistake. As she was placing her hand on the bar above, she immediately noticed something—or perhaps a lack of something would be a more appropriate phrase.

There was no glimmer or shine coming off her hand and she became suddenly aware and filled with anxiety that she was not wearing her lucky talisman. She suddenly felt so scared and vulnerable that she knew she would have to turn back and go home for it.

Going Home

The jewelry and its emotional value meant so much to her that she decided it was worth being late to work as long as she could wear her ring. At the next stop, she got off and took a train in the opposite direction, heading back home.

For the whole long walk home, the woman was overcome with a variety of different emotions but mainly anger towards herself. She thought to herself, “I can’t believe I left it at home,” and questioned how she could be so stupid, especially after her encounter the day before.

A Suspicious Car

The woman was in such a hazy panic that the walk home all felt like a blur, that was until she reached the familiar corner that led toward her home. As she followed the path, a knot of dread and fear formed in her stomach when saw an unusual sight.

A mysterious car was speeding away from the direction of her house, and it looked like he had just pulled out from her driveway. She quickly felt sick and started joining the dots from her conversation with the strange man to the mysterious car fleeing from her home.

A Break-In?

The woman burst through her door and, seconds later, made an alarming discovery. She had simply sprung through the door, meaning it was unlocked. “Did I forget to lock it? Have I been burgled,” she thought to herself and started feeling like she was having an anxiety attack.

That was the last she would see of her ring; she was sure of it. It was all too suspicious, and she was sure that, once she went upstairs, she’d find the ring absent. Still, she had to check, just to be absolutely certain.

A Vanishing Act

Knowing her morning ritual, she knew exactly where the ring should be; she sprinted up her stairs and flung open the door to her bedroom. She went straight to its resting spot and was overcome with nausea; it wasn’t there.

She knew she should have been more careful, she knew there and then that it was the man from the day before. She just had that natural instinct that he had followed her home and waited for her to leave before rummaging his greedy hands around her house. At that moment, she had one final thought…

Checking the Bathroom

The memory flickered in her head that earlier that day, she had taken the ring off in the bathroom, but was it still there? She hurried towards the toilet and almost jumped for joy as she spotted it lying on the sink in all its glory.

She suddenly remembered that in the morning, she had taken it off to brush her teeth and was in such a rush that she forgot to put it back on. Her relief was replaced by melancholy. Owning the ring was making her too anxious, and it would be best to finally sell it.

Going to an Auction

The fear of losing it was making her too nervous and paranoid, so her first stop after work would be an auction house. Besides, she had been struggling to pay her bills for a while and the pay from this, no matter how small, would certainly help.

The way the man from the day before had acted, she knew that the ring must be at least fairly valuable, but she wanted to know just how much it was worth, so she took it to Sotheby’s in London. She would finally get some answers.

What Was Its History?

The ring was old, that much was clear, but the woman wanted to know the exact history of it, was it a royal’s, a celebrity’s or even just a fake replica of an expensive ring? She wanted all the details of her antique, but most importantly she wanted to know how much it was worth.

She was filled with nerves and intrigue, but frustratingly this feeling would stick around for a while, as she had to wait days for the news from the auction house. Finally, she had the all-clear from Sotheby’s and she could finally hear the results.

A Pleasant Surprise

As the woman made her way to the auction house, she didn’t know what to think. She just wanted to hear what the professional appraisers had to say. When they finally informed her of its worth, no one could believe it. The room was in shock.

The ring was a 19th-century 26-carat cushion-shaped white diamond. It was crazy to think that all this time the woman had been walking through London wearing a ring of such high value; even stranger that she bought it so cheap.

The History Revealed

The lead jewelry expert of the auction house, Jessica Wyndham, explained that the ring was likely so precious because it was owned by a member of the royal family back in the 19th century. So how did it go from Buckingham Palace to a stall at a flea market?

Wyndham explained that techniques and skills have changed over the years. In the past, diamond cutting was duller and deeper than today’s diamond cutting. Without the luster people associate with gems, it’d be easy for people to think it wasn’t real.

The Auctioneer’s Explanation

Wyndham stated, “With an old style of cutting – an antique cushion shape – the light doesn’t reflect as much as it would from a modern stone cutting” further explaining why it appears to be less than authentic. How many people would have dismissed this unbelievable opportunity because they thought it was fake?

Jessica Wyndham went on further to explain that weight rather than luster was the priority in older cuttings. The larger stone size gave it the appearance that it was a cheap imitation of luxury rings rather than a 19th-century antique.

A True Antique

It was truly a diamond in the rough; all aspects of the ring disguised its true value from all those who were just looking to make a quick bit of cash. The ring was waiting for someone who would appreciate it, someone like the anonymous woman.

Wyndham explained why the process took longer than usual. Before any official assessment was made, the diamond was tested by the Gemological Institute of America. Once they confirmed its authenticity, the auction house could get a rough estimate of how much the ring would sell for.

An Unbelievable Amount of Luck

Though this was a rare and incredible opportunity, it does happen. However, in this circumstance, it was extremely fortunate for the woman to come into possession of the ring. Wyndham explained to the BBC why it was so incredible that this particular woman had found the ring.

She explained to them “They’d been to quite a few car-boot sales over the years. But they don’t have any history of collecting antiques, and they don’t have any history of collecting diamonds. This is a one-off windfall; an amazing find.”

How Much Could It Make?

The woman was waiting to hear the price it could fetch; she was almost crying with happiness as she awaited the results. Jessica Wyndham informed the woman that it could sell for a staggering amount of money if she took it to the auction.

She stated that the ring could sell for as high as £350,000, enough to completely change the woman’s life. In an interview, Wyndham said, “They came in with the idea that it might be real, and they had no idea of its value.”

Going Even Further

The day of the auction came, and the woman was both ecstatic and terrified to hear how it would go. This was more money than she had ever had in her life, so it was an important day. The bidding started and just kept going.

In the end, the ring sold for a jaw-dropping amount: £656,750! This is equivalent to $847,667. An eye-watering amount for anyone and especially for the unnamed woman who had naively been wearing it all these years. She understood now, why the man at the store was so intrigued by her ring.

An Ending Fit for Royalty

The precious ring had once been owned by royalty, and now the woman who discovered it was about to live like royalty. She had gone from searching through flea markets for a quick profit to living like a real-life princess.

This story had a truly happy ending and one that benefitted everyone. The woman had finally become the princess she had dreamed of being, historians had located another gem owned by the royal family and whoever bought the ring was about to be very happy themselves.

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