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Diamond

Diamond can't be judged at first sight It is the finest gemstone on the market and experts have been led to develop a system of objective evaluation. Once you understand the rules of the game, that is the four C’s required to classify the diamond, then you can choose the shape, quality and best price without even looking at the gemstone.

Gemologist's Advice

"Consider the philosophy of the 4 C’s and you will immediately understand the quality of the diamond. If you miss what I’m talking about, download our free handbook"

Diamond

It derives its name from the greek “adamas” which means invincible that probably refers to its hardness. It is the hardest gemstone in the world, more than 140 times harder than the second mineral that cames on the scene, that is the corundum from which ruby and sapphire varieties come from. There is evidence that the diamond has been known since the fourth century AC. From a Sanskrit text we discovered that this gemstone was the subject of intense trade due to its rarity and hardness and that it was declared the queen of fine gemstones known at that time. Until the 18th century India was the only country to manufacture diamonds. The Romans much appreciated the gemstone and also believed that this precious mineral had supernatural powers.

Genesis

Diamond is a mineral composed mainly of carbon that crystallises at really high temperatures and pressures, at a depth of about 150-200 km. It is extracted mainly from deep mines out of hollow rocks called kimberlites, named after the town of Kimberley in South Africa where they were first discovered. It can be also found in secondary alluvial deposits which are formed by the erosion of primary deposits and whose minerals have been brought in by the water and transported to great distances concentrating in continental areas or at sea.

Historical Highlights

In the early days of diamond mining only secondary deposits were known; the rough mineral was extracted using basic techniques. They dug with picks and shovels and used water from streams or rivers whose course was purposely diverted towards the deposits. To separate the diamonds they used a “batea”, a simple but effective tool that reminds us of the one used by gold miners in western movies.Today, most of the diamonds are extracted by digging large “holes” in the Kymberlite deposits. The largest and well known one is the “Big Hole” in the town of Kimberely in South Africa from which these deposits take their name.That is where it all started in 1867
A child, while playing in the Orange River, found a transparent pebble. Fascinated by this new “toy” he showed it to his parents. After careful analysis by an expert mineralogist it was declared the discovery of the first African diamond which was given the name “Eureka”. Today the cut diamond is exhibited in Paris and weighs 10.73 ct. After that there was a wild diamond rush.The large agricultural farmers didn’t welcome the diamond seekers as they invaded their farms and amongst them were the De Beers’ brothers. They sold their land where the five most famous mines (Dutoitspan, Bultfontein, De Beers, Wesselton and Kimberly) were discovered.
The De Beers name was kept alive thanks to the initiative of a young Englishman, Cecil Rhodes who founded the De Beers’ Mining Company and then De Beers’ Consolidated Mines, taking total control of the diamonds in South Africa.

Birthstone of April

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