A Brief History Of Diamonds
Diamonds are the most prized and highly valued gemstones and throughout history have been sought after by royalty and the most famous. They are seen as a symbol of wealth but are also seen as symbols of strength and durability, unique because know two diamonds are the same, given as tokens of love, in many cases as the ultimate gift. The saying is Diamonds are Forever, the diamond is shrouded in myth and legend and yet its make up is the simplest in composition.
The diamond is pure crystallised carbon the most fundamental of life’s chemical elements. Diamonds come in many colours of the rainbow and sparkle more than any gemstone, a true thing of beauty.
The diamond was first mined over 4,000 years ago in India and was mainly used to decorate religious objects and as talismans against evil. In Buddhist scripture it states that truth is eternal just like the diamond.
In ancient times India was the world’s only source of diamonds right up to the beginning of the 18th century and most were to be found along the river banks and even today some of the worlds finest stones are found along the Godavari and Krishna rivers.
The ancient Greeks believed that diamonds were the tears of the gods and splinters from the stars, the word derived from the greek for diamond is “adamas” and means indestructible, just like the diamond.
In the Greek-Roman times diamonds were used as commodities of trade and became symbols of luxury.
Diamonds were polished in Venice in the 14th century and by the late 14th century diamond polishing had spread to Bruges then paris and later to Antwerp. With more and more travel the trade in diamonds spread and by the 17th century London also became a famous diamond centre, cutting stones and trading in rough diamonds.
As Indian mines started to become depleted new finds were found in Brasil and then South Africa and in 1905 the “Cullinar” diamond was discovered weighing 3,105 carats and now the great diamond rush was in full swing. By the 20th century South Africa established itself as the worlds top diamond producing country and soon many other African countries followed suit.
The origins of diamonds is still somewhat of a mystery to this day, however, we do know that many millions of years ago heat and pressure transformed carbon into diamonds deep under the earths surface and then by volcanic type reactions these formations were forced towards the earths surface where they cooled . Some diamonds have to be mined others are washed away from their original source and these are known as alluvial deposits.
It takes approximately 100-200 tons of ore to give us a I carat polished stone so we can see why a diamond is still a rare gem and why it costs so much.
Nature took millions of years to produce a rough diamond but it is the skill of the craftsman to unlock its real beauty, cut with precision and delicacy we see the real magic of the diamond come to life.
A diamond is literally a tear from the stars that sparkles on the finger natures real gem.