Wednesday Christie’s Auction House sold an extremely rare, 17th-century fancy deep grayish-blue diamond for 16.39 million pounds ($24.3 million), a world record price for any diamond or piece of jewelry sold at auction.

The pre-sale estimate was about half the sale price, 9 million pounds.

Famed jeweler Laurence Graff bought the 35.56-carat, historic Wittelsbach diamond, which came to the international market for the first time in almost 80 years, in a highly competitive auction, a Christie’s spokesperson told Reuters.

Large blue diamonds of high clarity, such as this, are very rare. The history of the stone also enhanced its value.

“The importance of the piece, the rarity of it, was recognized,” said Keith Penton, head of Christie’s jewelry department in London.

He said there was strong interest in the diamond from jewelers and private collectors.

The diamond, which was found in an Indian diamond mine, was part of the dowry of the Infanta Margarita Teresa (1651-1673) upon her engagement to Leopold I of Austria.

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