Diamonds have captivated people for thousands of years. Diamonds shine and shimmer, but there’s more to their story than their beauty. Check out these 5 Interesting Facts About Diamonds Everyone Should Know to find out more about the world’s most precious gemstone.
#1: Diamonds Are Billions of Years Old
You may think that most of the diamonds you’ve seen don’t look a day over 1 million, and you might be right. Most of the diamonds found in the world are between 1 – 3.3 billion years old, though the oldest diamonds discovered so far may be more than 4 billion years old.
#2: Diamonds Are Hard, But Not Unbreakable
Diamonds are made of carbon and they are incredibly strong. In fact, they’re one of the hardest substances on the planet. There are a few substances that give diamonds a run for their money (like graphene and ultrahard fullerite) but these substances are much more difficult to find and some can only be synthesized artificially.
However, the hardness of a diamond doesn’t make these gemstones unbreakable. In fact, a skilled jeweler can split diamonds with a single hit.
#3: Diamonds Aren’t Just Used in Jewelry
Many of us think of rings and necklaces when diamonds come up. However, these gemstones are used in a wide range of other products as well, including:
The large demand for diamonds means that around 28,000 tons of loose diamonds are mined every single year. Laboratories help address the growing demand for diamonds by producing around 110,000 tons of synthetic diamonds yearly.
#4: The Largest Diamond Ever Found Weighed More Than 1 Pound
The largest gem quality diamond discovered was dug up in 1905. This diamond was named the Cullinan. Found in South Africa, the Cullinan weighed around 1.33 pounds. The huge gemstone was given to England’s King Edward VII and then split up into:
9 Major Gemstones
96 Smaller Gemstones
A Large Number of Unpolished Pieces
Many pieces of the Cullinan ended up in royal jewelry in England. You can see some of them on display even today if you visit the Tower of London.
#5: Natural Diamonds Come from Deep Underground or from Space
Many of the naturally occurring diamonds on our planet form deep beneath the surface, where heat and pressure transform carbon into beautiful gems. Most diamond formation occurs between 87-118 miles below the surface of the planet.
We can’t get to those diamonds by drilling, so we have to wait for volcanic eruptions to carry diamonds closer to the surface.
However, scientists believe that not all the diamonds on Earth were formed here. Carbonado diamonds – diamonds with high levels of graphite found in South America and Africa - may have extraterrestrial origins. These diamonds may have been deposited by an asteroid 3 billion years in the past.
Build Up Your Knowledge of Diamond Facts
Diamonds are beautiful gem stones with an ever-expanding list of uses in our world. You can deepen your appreciation for these gorgeous and useful gemstones by checking out interesting facts about their formation, location, and more.