The Kohinoor diamond will be displayed in a new exhibition at the Tower of London from Friday as a victory symbol to showcase its turbulent colonial history in a “transparent, balanced and inclusive” way. India has been claiming its claim on this diamond. Kohinoor is also known as ‘Koh-e-Noor’.
It is part of the new Jewel House exhibition and is accompanied by a video that shows the diamond’s journey around the world. The exhibition will trace the entire journey of the Kohinoor and how it has been a symbol of victory for all its previous owners – the Mughal Emperors, the Shahs of Iran, the rulers of Afghanistan and the Sikh Maharajas.
A spokesman for the Historic Royal Palaces (HRP), the body that manages the palace in Britain, said: “The new exhibition explores the origins of many of the items in the collection, including the Koh-i-Noor.” The spokesperson said, “It refers to its long history as a symbol of victory, having passed through the hands of the Mughal emperors, the Shahs of Iran, the Amirs of Afghanistan and the Sikh Maharajas. We did extensive research and consulted local people, community groups and expert academics before putting it on display.”
“Our aim has been to present history in a transparent, balanced and inclusive manner,” he added. Its label reads, “The 1849 Treaty of Lahore forced the 10-year-old Maharaja Duleep Singh to surrender the diamond to Queen Victoria, along with control of the Punjab. Koh-i-Noor means ‘Mountain of Light’ in the Persian language. The exhibition will run till November.
Camilla, the new Queen of Britain and wife of King Charles III, did not wear Queen Elizabeth’s Kohinoor-studded crown during her coronation in the past as a diplomatic move. Along with the Kohinoor, other items belonging to the royal family are also on display.