Tuesday, November 23, 2010

China's $331 Million Giant Legendary Luminous "Pearl"

By on Tuesday, November 23, 2010 7 Comments

Just recently China put on display in Wenchang, Hainan, the world's largest luminous "pearl". These are not really pearls as we know them but a rare kind of glow in the dark (phosphorescent) fluorite.

This giant luminous pearl specimen, which weighs in at 6 tonnes and is 1.6 m (5 feet) high, took 3 years to grind into a sphere!

The Chinese call them legendary luminous pearls or yemengzhu and believe touching one will bring good luck and fortune. The first yemengzhu fluorite was discovered in a Guangdong tungsten mine back in 1982. Since then, new and larger deposits have allowed several giant pearls to be made.

This latest, the largest so far, has been valued at 2.2 billion yuan or about $331 million. There are of course smaller ones. I wonder if these will be made into beads and thus a legendary luminous pearl necklace?

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  1. Glow in the dark? Is it radioactive?

    (Via Facebook)

  2. No, it's not radioactive. It's phosphorescent which means it can store light energy and emit it later. Like glow in the dark chemicals used for kid's toys etc. Many natural minerals have fluorescent or phosphorescent properties.

  3. Wow!!! that's huge! fit to be a pendant for a giant!

  4. One has to wonder if they intend to display it in a museum or if they'll eventually use it to fashion many, many, many beads from it. After all I can't imagine there be much call for a stone of that size, it's certainly too big for one to display on their fireplace mantle or on a bookcase shelf and not many people have 331 million in cool, hard cash just laying around. LOL

  5. That would have been one big shell that had to come from, but what if its purpose is to store energy for release in some other kind of device, I know i think to much, but it does make you wonder.

  6. It isn't a true pearl - ie it didn't come from an oyster or mussel. It is a mineral rock which has been carved into a round ball.

  7. What a value. I wonder who in the world would pay that much for one gem? Definitely have to be a multi-billionaire who just wants bragging rights.