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Choosing an engagement ring.

The smart groom-to-be does his research before buying his fiancée a diamond ring! There are more styles and cuts to choose from than ever before. It’s not enough to be educated about the four Cs of diamonds – cut, color, clarity and carats. Now there are all types of diamond cuts and settings to choose from.

The most popular style of engagement ring is still the round brilliant. It’s one of the earliest cuts ever developed and now relies on precise mathematical equations to create a stone with fire and brilliance that the earliest gem cutters could only have dreamed of.

But many brides want something completely unique. There are many traditional cuts to choose from. A pear-shaped is just that – wider at one end than the other. Or she can choose popular cuts such as an oval, emerald or heart-shaped diamond. There are other cuts with unique faceting, such as the square princess-cut diamond which is probably the second most popular cut.

Some cuts are patented, like the elongated Ashoka diamond or the Asprey & Garrard Eternal cut diamond. Other branded and patented cuts include:

Elara – a square-cut diamond with rounded corners

Asscher – a square diamond with rounded facets that gives an unusual complexity to the diamond

Couples diamond – this diamond is faceted to reveal either a circle of hearts or arrows inside. It’s a truly unusual diamond that requires precise cutting for the image to appear properly.

The price of a diamond increases exponentially with its carat weight. A one-carat diamond costs much more than 10, 10-point diamonds and a two-carat diamond costs more than twice as much as a one-carat diamond (given equal quality in other areas).

One way to enhance an engagement ring is with embellishments such as baguettes or trillions. A baguette is a small emerald-shaped diamond that can be placed on either side of the main stones and a trillion is a triangle-shaped diamond that also is a good enhancement to the center stone.

Are Diamonds Really Forever?

In the past, the Greeks and the Romans thought that the diamonds were tears of Gods and small pieces of stars. There were also the Hindus, who thought that the diamonds had so much power that they put diamonds in the eyes of some of their statues. Other people believed that an unapproachable valley in Central Asia covered by diamonds existed. One said that this valley was “kept by birds of prey and protected by snakes of mortal stare”.

Besides believing that diamonds could attract luck and success, people also thought that they could defy the astrological events. Many people used them as jewels, supposing they would be increasing their sexual power and capacity to attract. Even Plato wrote about diamonds, describing them as living creatures, impersonating divine spirits.

Until the 15th century, only kings were allowed to use diamonds, having them as a symbol of courage, power and invincibility. But as the centuries passed by, the diamond started to acquire its status of sublime proof of love. Currently, they are related to the love, romance and myth.

We probably will never know when the first diamond was discovered, but we do know that, from the ancient times to the 18th century, all the diamonds of the world came from India. From the period of the Roman Empire to the appearance of the first Europeans to India, in the beginning of the 16th century, the commercial relations between Europe and Eastern Asia bloomed.

One of the main routes of the diamond commerce was in Venice. The city became the most important mercantile republic of the western world. It enjoyed the monopoly of the commerce of the diamond course to the main cities of the south of Germany until its final destiny, Brussels. Since this city became the final phase of the commercial route, it became a promising centre of diamond stature, and the reputation of the city in this sector did not stop increasing. Even though Brussels maintained their predominance until the end of the 14th century, they began to decline in a lapse of fifty years. The diamond trade and numerous other economic activities of Brussels were moved progressively to the city of Ambers, which offered more recent and better facilities for the communications and the commercial exchange. In 1866, the first diamond in South Africa was discovered. Following this was the discovery of the deposits of Kimberley few years later, giving birth to the fabulous era of Kimberley.

The word diamond comes from the Greek word ‘ adamas ‘, meaning invincible, and ‘ diaphanes ‘, that means transparent. In the past centuries, people believed that a diamond could reattach a wrecked marriage. It was used also in battles as a symbol of courage.

Even though the diamond is the hardest rock known by men, it is the only precious gem with only one element: carbon. Nevertheless, it can only be melted when exposed to a temperature of 5500 degrees Celsius! Billions of years before, the basic forces of heat and pressure miraculously transformed the carbon into diamond through volcano lava underneath the earth. In some way, this volcanic mass was expelled out of the earthly crust, cooling soon to be found as diamonds in rudimentary form. No acid can destroy them, and they are capable to cut anything on Earth, therefore, they only can be cut with themselves.

However, are the diamonds really forever? If they appeared miraculously, can they be destroyed? As incredible as it may seem, the small diamond that adorn the ring that you gave your wife will probably last forever – at least while Earth exists. They are the most resistant minerals of the planet, and only can be melted when displayed to a temperature of 5500°C. The problem is that the global atmosphere will never achieve this high temperature, even if it was to be hit by an enormous meteor that would eliminate all forms of life. They only would melt if, one day, the planet literally entered the Sun, which has a temperature of 5800°C. The curious thing is that, according to astronomers, in 7,5 billion years our planet will actually enter the Sun, when the star will be next to death. If you think diamonds will disappear then, you might be wrong. When such episode happens, the temperature of the Sun will lower to about 3000°C. That means that even when Earth reaches an atmosphere as hot and dense as Mercury’s atmosphere, we will still be able to find some small diamonds spread around.

Peter Fitzpatrick founded International Diamond Brokers in 2008 after identifying an opportunity to deal directly with some of the worlds largest diamond suppliers, allowing him to provide high quality diamonds at significant  discounts against retail prices.

Utilising international retail contacts, Peter has worked tirelessly to deliver a quality service and product to customers. Stones are selected and individually checked and verified by a top gemmologist.

At International Diamond Brokers we strive to achieve only the very best for our customers, we source the best quality diamonds using industry scientific guidelines for evaluating, delivering the highest quality and deal only in conflict free diamonds.

All of International Diamond Broker’s Diamonds come with certificates from recognised and approved international gemmological laboratories.

 

What To Look For When It Comes To Diamond Quality !

 

If you want to begin judging diamond quality, you must first learn and understand the 4 C’s, which are four characteristics of diamonds that give the gemstone it’s overall value.  The 4 C’s for judging diamond quality include the diamonds colour, clarity, carats and cut.

 

Judging Col0ur

 

Most diamonds are considered to be ideal if they are transparent, or colourless.  Diamonds that are rated as colourless are the most expensive of diamonds.  The colours of diamonds are rated with an alphabet grading system that starts with “D” and ends with “Z”.  Completely colourless diamonds fall in the “D” and “E” grade, while coloured, fancy diamonds are at the other end of the alphabet, at “Y” and “Z”.

 

There are two main ways that jewellers’ use when judging diamond quality based on colour.  They may pull out a set of reference stones, and find the closest match between the diamond and the reference stone to determine its letter grade.  Alternatively, the jeweller may use a colorimeter, which can electronically measure the colour of the stone and determine its grade within 1/3 of a grade.

 

Judging Clarity

 

The clarity of a diamond refers to whether or not the diamond is clear all the way through, or whether it has tiny flaws and cloudy areas within the gemstone.  It’s actually very rare to have a diamond with absolute perfect clarity and no flaws, but most diamond flaws are not visible to the naked eye and can only be seen with a magnifying device.

 

The Gemmological Institute of America (GIA) uses a magnification of about 10x when judging diamond quality based on the clarity.  It is important to do your research before purchasing a diamond to be sure you are not spending more money than you should.

 

Judging Carat Weight

 

Carat is the term we used to describe the weight of a diamond gemstone.  One carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams of weight.  A single diamond with a high amount of carat weight is more expensive than the equivalent amount of carats in multiple stones.  This is because finding the larger diamonds is much more rare of an occurrence.  So if you want a 2-carat diamond ring, for example, you may decide to go with a half-carat diamond surrounded by smaller diamonds that add up to one and a half carats to give you the total of 2 carats!  Judging diamond quality by the amount of carats is difficult, since different shaped gemstones, and stones with different levels of clarity will be priced differently even if they have the same amount of carats.

 

 

 

Judging Cut

 

One of the most important factors in judging diamond quality is judging the cut of a diamond.  It’s important because a quality cut diamond will be more brilliant and reflects light more beautifully, and yet the cut of a diamond has the least impact on the overall price of the diamond.

 

When judging diamond quality on the cut of a diamond, look at the stone in a well lit area.  If the light seems to go into the stone and bounce back, showing a sparkling reflective surface, the diamond has a good cut.  The angles and shapes of a diamond are important to judging diamond quality and the overall appearance of your diamond.

Around the world there are many diamonds that have been talked about or written about in various stories and official documents.  Famous diamonds are part of our world’s history, and have been found in various parts of the world, by all types of people.  From royalty to the gods, famous diamonds are often as well known as the people who owned them.

 For centuries diamonds, famous diamonds or otherwise, were used in the armour of warriors and the crowns of kings and queens as a symbol of fearlessness.

 The Mountain of Light

 One of the few oval shaped famous diamonds, the “mountain of light” was first mentioned in the year 1304.  It weighed an astounding 186 carats, and it is said that the diamond was set in the peacock throne of Shah Jehan as an eye of one of the peacock’s.

 During Queen Victoria’s reign, the famous diamonds shape was altered a bit and it was recut to weigh 108.93 carats.  The diamond is currently one of the British Crown Jewels.

 The Orloff

 When the Orloff diamond was found, it was said that it weighed around 300 carats.  This gemstone of the famous diamonds is held at the Diamond Treasury of the former Soviet Union located in Moscow.

 A story about the Orloff claims that the diamond was actually placed in the eye of a god, in the temple of Sri Rangen, which is how it became known as one of the world’s famous diamonds.

 The Regent

 Before this incredibly large diamond of the famous diamonds was cut it weighed 410 carats!  Originally called “The Pitt”, after the English Prime Minister, William Pitt, it was cut into a rounded shape and consisted of more than 140 carats.

 In 1717, the diamond was sold to the Duke of Orleans, Regent of France.  It was then that the diamond was renamed “The Regent”.  When Louis XV had his coronation, the stone was set into his crown.

When the French Revolution ended, “The Regent” was owned by Napoleon Bonaparte, and was placed into the hilt of Bonaparte’s sword.

Currently, the diamond is on display for all to enjoy in the Louvre.

The Blue Hope

 The most well known of all famous diamonds, the Blue Hope is currently in the Smithsonian Institution located in the state of Washington.  It was owned by Louis XIV, and at the time was called “the blue diamond of the crown”.

 Sometime during the French Revolution, the Blue Hope diamond was stolen.  It was later found in London in the year 1830, where it was later purchased by Henry Philip Hope.  The blue hope diamond received it’s name from this individual, as well as it’s reputation for causing bad luck to those who owned it.  While Henry Philip Hope owned the precious blue diamond, each of his family  members died in extreme poverty.

Continuing with the bad luck, a later owner of the Blue Hope, Mr. Edward McLean also lost many family members to poverty while he possessed the diamond.

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