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36 Interesting facts about diamonds

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You must have read a lot about diamonds—the various cuts, shapes, and of course, the 4Cs, but there are more facts about diamonds that you probably don’t know.

For example, diamond crystals are brought closer to the Earth’s surface through volcanic activity, and can be found in shallow alluvial deposits where the crystals settle after being transported away from the kimberlite pipes by geologic activity and rivers.

Here are more diamond facts to amaze you:

  1. Prior to the 18th century, most diamonds were found in India. Diamonds were first minded in India over 2800 years ago.
  2. The word “Carat” is thought to be derived from the Carob Bean – an ancient unit of weight. The weigh is so uniform and consistent that it was used as a counter weigh when balances were used to weigh an item.
  3. Round cut diamonds only have 57 facets.
  4.  The ancient Greeks believed that diamonds were splinters of stars that has fallen to the earth.
  5.  D, E and F are colourless diamonds. Since there is no colour found in them, there is no difference in colour. The only difference in these diamonds is the transparency. D is more transparent that E, E is more transparent than F.
  6.  The largest diamond ever discovered weighed 3106 carats.
  7.  Diamonds are known as symbols of strength, courage and invincibility.
  8.  It is said that Cupid’s arrows have diamond tips.
  9.  Nitrogen molecules account for the yellowish tint or color in diamonds. Boron molecules turn diamonds blue.
  10.  Only one diamond in a million weighs one carat or more.
  11.    The largest cut diamond is the Great Star of Africa – 530 carats.
  12.  The tradition of giving a diamond engagement ring dates back to the year 1477 when Archduke Maximilian of Austria gave a diamond ring to Mary of Burgundy.
  13.  The tradition of wearing an engagement ring on the fourth finger of the left hand is taken from the early Egyptian belief that the vein of love (vena amoris) runs directly from the heart to the top of that finger.
  14.  A rough diamond looks so similar to a pebble that most people will just pass it by without giving it a second look.
  15.  On average a diamond will lose about 50% of its original weight when it is cut and polished.
  16.  Plato wrote about diamonds as living beings, embodying celestial spirits.
  17.  As a talisman, when given as a token of friendship or love, a diamond will give its new owner courage, faith and inner strength.
  18.  A diamond is four times harder than the next hardest material on the scale – Sapphires, Corundum and Rubies.
  19.    Diamonds were formed 3 billion years ago, deep within the Earth’s crust.
  20.  It is estimated that less than one percent of women, in the world, will ever wear a diamond of one carat or more.
  21.  A single diamond of 2 carats is worth more than double than that of 2 one carat diamonds.
  22.  The word “diamonds” comes from the Greek word “adamas”, which means “unconquerable and indestructible.”
  23.  Less than 20% of diamonds mined are considered gem-quality and can be used in jewelery.
  24.  Australia accounts for producing the most diamonds in volume.
  25.  Only 2% of all gem-quality diamonds are flawless.
  26. In 2014, Russia produced the most diamonds by volume and value.
  27. With the opening of the Ekati mine in late 1988, and others in Canada, North America produces almost 10 percent of the total world diamond production by volume.
  28. Even though the U.S. produces almost no diamonds for commercial consumption, America buys more than 40 percent of the world’s gem quality diamonds – making it the world’s largest diamond market.

Hope diamond.jpg

Image shows the Hope necklace

  1. The Hope diamond, a Fancy dark grayish blue diamond, fashioned into a cushion brilliant cut, was originally 112 ct. before being cut to its present weight of 45.52 ct.
  2. The Hope diamond is said to be cursed. Although one of its owners, Evalyn McLean believed it to be her good luck charm, her life states otherwise; after possession of the gem, her young son died in a car accident, her husband divorced her and died insane, and her daughter committed suicide.
  3. The Hope diamond, perhaps the world’s most legendary gem, arrived at its present home at the Smithsonian Institution on Nov. 10, 1958 via the U.S. mail – albeit registered first class!
  4. Diamonds can be burned. To burn a diamond, it must be heated to between 1290-1650 degrees Fahrenheit. House fires and jewelers’ torches can sometimes reach that temperature.
  5. D-to-Z color diamonds are the most widely used in jewelry, but diamonds come in all colors of the rainbow. For natural colored diamonds, blue, green, orange and red are the rarest; yellow and brown are the most common.
  6. Diamonds were used to engrave gemstones in India by 300 BCE.
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