70 000 gulden

At 594 grams, this precious opal is not only the largest from a European deposit, but also the most valuable gemstone in the Vienna collection.
This enormous precious opal was allegedly found by a flint collector in a river bed near Dubnik (Cˇervenica) in Slovakia in the 17th century. It ended up in the imperial treasury in Vienna before 1672. From there it was one of the first collection exhibits to be incorporated in the natural history cabinet of Emperor Franz I Stephan of Lorraine.
In the inventory it was listed as the world’s largest and most valuable opal. Its value was estimated to be 70,000 gulden.

On display in Hall IV.

Photo: NHM Wien, Lois Lammerhuber