The diamond is one of the most prized gemstones in the world and it could fetch hundreds of millions of dollars! Durable and dazzling, it also has interesting facts and stories that will dazzle you more!
The word comes from “adamas,” a Greek word which means “unconquerable,” “indestructible,” or “unbreakable.” Diamond is by far the hardest and most durable gemstone in the world.
Diamonds were formed a billion years ago under a combination of extreme heat and pressure. In some cases there are diamonds that are over three billion years old!
The early Romans and Greeks believed that diamonds were the tears cried by the gods or stars fallen on earth. The Romans believed that the tips of Cupid’s arrows were made of diamonds — that perhaps explains the strong association between love and diamonds.
The Romans (again) also saw diamonds as talismans, giving the wearer the strength and protection from the evil supernatural powers.
The rough-cut Cullinan diamond weighs 3,106.75 carats (621.35 grams), making it the biggest diamond ever found.
Although diamonds’ best known use is for jewelry, most of them are not suitable enough for this purpose. Rather, 80% of the world’s diamonds go for industrial uses. They are valued for their durability and thermal conductivity.
The diamonds we usually see are clear and colorless, but they can also be naturally found in pale yellow, pink, blue, brown, orange and black. Colored diamonds are extremely rare, though.
The Hope Diamond is one of the most beautiful and dazzling jewelry pieces in the world because of its rare blue color. Celebrated as it is for its beauty and rarity, the Hope Diamond has otherwise gained infamy because it is rumored to be a “cursed” gemstone. Several people who owned the diamond — from Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette to American socialite Evalyn Walsh McLean — suffered hapless and tragic fates. But not all people who owned it became unlucky in life, though.
The Smithsonian Institute currently displays the Hope Diamond, which is reportedly insured for $250 million.
The diamond is 100% carbon. Under intense heat and pressure beneath the earth’s surface, the carbon atoms are arranged in a special way that results into the diamond’s unique and beautiful crystalline structure.
The following top five diamond-producing countries are (figures in carats):
Russian Federation – 37.8 million
Botswana – 23.1 million
Democratic Republic of Congo – 15.6 million
Australia – 11.7 million
Canada – 10.5 million
This is really interesting… it may sound like a piece of science fiction/fantasy, but that could be real! While Earth forms carbon into diamonds underneath its surface, in Jupiter and Saturn diamonds are literally formed in the sky! Since Jupiter and Saturn have both dense atmospheres, they both have immense amounts of gravity, pressure and heat — the same factors that help form carbon into diamonds underneath the Earth’s surface.
First, the lightning storms on these two gas giants turn methane into a carbon soot. As the carbon soot falls, the combination of pressure and heat compresses it in mid-air, resulting to a sparkling precipitation of diamonds!
But before you get too excited to board a space shuttle and fly to Jupiter or Saturn, you must know that these two planets both have extremely hot cores. As the diamonds fall and sink into the blazing cores, they eventually turn themselves into molten carbon. Thus, the diamonds in Jupiter and Saturn do not stay solid in the sky for long.
Diamonds were first discovered in India, then in Brazil
Although the United States makes up less than 1% of the total diamond production in the world, it buys more than half of the diamonds in the world market.