Diamond Glossary

 
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z ALL
A
Abraded Culet
A culet that has minor abrasions on it.
Abrasion
Tiny nicks along facet junctions, producing white fuzzy lines instead of sharp crisp facet edges.
Asscher Cut
A square diamond cut named after its inventor, Joseph Asscher.
B
Baguette
A step cut in the shape of a small rectangular stone. May be tapered at one end.
Bearded Girdle
Tiny numerous hairlike fractures extending into the diamond.
Bearding
Tiny numerous hairlike fractures extending into the diamond.
Bezel
A facet on the crown, or upper part of the diamond above the girdle.
Blemish
Imperfection on the external surface of the diamond.
Bow-Tie
An effect caused by a shadowy area visible in some fancy shapes, caused by light leaking out the bottom of the diamond.
Bruise
Inclusions consisting of surface crumbling, often accompanied by tiny rootlike feathers.
Burned Facet
Facet appears whitish, or burnt, as a result of the cutter polishing the facet against the grain.
C
Cavity
An inclusion consisting of a large or deep opening in the diamond.
Charactistic Color
The basic, overall color of a fancy-colored diamond.
Chip
A tiny piece missing from the diamond.
Chipped Culet
A culet whose point is missing.
Cloud
A group of tiny white inclusions which result in a milky or cloudy appearance.
Coated Diamond
A diamond colored by a surface coating which masks the true body-color; the coating may be extensive (entire pavilion, for example), but is more often limited to one or two pavilion facets or a spot on the girdle.
Crown
The upper part of the diamond above the girdle. Consists of a large flat area on top called a table, and several facets below it.
D
Depth of Color
The combination of tone and saturation that determines how noticeable a color is.
E
Emerald Cut
The Emerald Cut is rectangular with cut corners. It is a step cut as opposed to a brilliant cut. The facets are broad with flat planes resembling the steps of a stair. That's why it is refered to as a step cut.
Extra Facet
A facet placed without regard for symmetry and not required by the cutting style.
F
Facet
Plane, polished surface of a diamond.
Faceted Girdle
Sometimes cutters polish the girdle into 32 facets.
Feather
A separation or break due to either cleavage or fracture, often white and feathery in appearance.
FL
Flawless
Flaw
An imperfection in a diamond.
Fracture
A crack on the surface of the diamond.
G
Girdle
The outer edge or the widest part of the diamond forming a band.
Grain Center
A small area of concentrated crystal structure distortion, associated with pinpoints.
H
Hardness
A mineral's resistance to scratching on a smooth surface. Mohs scale of relative hardness consists of 10 minerals, each scratching all those below it in scale and being scratched by all those above it.
Heart Shape Cut
The Heart Shaped Cut is similar to the Pear Shape, except that there is a cleft at the top. In fact, often the reason cutters may choose a Heart Shape over a Pear may be that the rough diamond contained an inclusion located in the cleft. The skill of the cutter can make a great difference in the beauty of this cut. The shape appeal is especially important with Heart Cuts.
Hue
Pure, spectral (prismatic) color. Hues include gradations and mixtures of red, organe, yellow, green, blue, violet and purple.
I
I1
Included.
I2
Included
I3
Included
IF
Internally Flawless
Included Crystal
A mineral crystal contained within a diamond.
Inclusion
Internal imperfection of the diamond.
Internal Graining
Irregular crystal growth within the diamond. May appear milky or colored, like faint lines or streaks.
Irradiated Diamond
A diamond which has been exposed to radiation.
K
Knot
An included diamond crystal which reaches the surface of a polished diamond.
L
Laser Drill Hole
A tiny tube made by a laser.
Loupe
Magnifying glass usually of 10X.
M
Marquise Cut
The name "Marquise" came from a legend of the Marquise of Pompadour that the Sun King wanted a diamond to be polished into the shape of the mouth of the Marquise. The typical Marquise Cut contains 56 facets.
Master Stones
A set of color comparison diamonds that defines diamond color grades in the normal (D-to-Z) range.
Melee
Small diamonds under .20 carat.
Mohs Scale
The ten-point scale of mineral hardness, keyed arbitrarily to the minerals talc, gypsum, calcite, fluorite, apatite, orthoclase, quartz, topaz, corundum, and diamond.
N
Natural
Part of the rough diamond remaining on the diamond itself, having survived the cutting process. This is usually the sign of a good cutter attempting to maximize the weight retention of the rough diamond.
Natural Culet
This means the culet has not been polished at all and the actual rough diamond was retained. It can be a sign of a good cutter.
Near Colorless
A general term for diamonds in the G-to-J color range.
Needle
A long, thin rod-like crystal.
Nick
A notch near the girdle of a facet edge.
Normal Color Range
Range of diamond colors from colorless to light yellow and light brown.
O
Off Make
A poorly proportioned diamond.
Old European Cut
Old European Cut diamonds used to be popular before the science of diamond cutting developed the Round Brilliant Cut which is designed to return more light to the eye.
Oval Cut
The Oval Cuthape is very similar to a Round except it is elliptical. It was invented by Lazare Kaplan in the early 1960's. The Oval Shape usually has 56 facets. Shape appeal is very important with Oval Cuts.
P
Pavilion
The bottom part of the diamond, below the girdle.
Pear Cut
The Pear Cut is a combination of a Round brilliant and a Marquise cut. Pendants looks very nice set with a Pear shape as do earrings, due to the teardrop shape.
Pinpoint
Miniscule spots internal to a diamond. A cluster of pinpoints can form a cloud.
Pit
A tiny opening, often looks like a white dot.
Point
0.01 Carat
Polish Lines
Tiny parallel lines left by polishing.
Polish Mark
Surface clouding caused by excessive heat (also called burn mark, or burned facet), or uneven polished surface resulting from structural irregularities.
Princess Cut
The Princess Cut is relatively new. It is a very attractive cut. Some people like the Princess because it is rectangular and yet has some of the sparkle of a Round brilliant cut.
R
Rough Girdle
A grainy or pitted girdle surface, often with nicks.
Round Brilliant Cut
Rounds are the most popular shape that diamonds are cut into. It is also the most brilliant of all the cuts.
S
Saturation
A color's position on a neutral to vivid scale.
Scratch
A linear indentation normally seen as a fine white line.
Scratch Graining
Surface indication of structural irregularity. May resemble faint facet junction lines, or cause a grooved or wavy surface, often cross facet junctions.
SI1
Slightly Included
SI2
Slightly Included
Spread Stone
A diamond with a large table and a thin crown height.
T
Tone
A color's position on a colorless-to-black scale.
Treated Diamond
A diamond with a body color induced by some form of artificial irradiation, often in conjunction with controlled heating (known as annealing).
Twinning Wisp
A cloudy area produced by crystal structure distortion, usually associated with twinning planes.
V
VS1
Very Slightly Included
VS2
Very Slightly Included
VVS1
Very Very Slightly Included
VVS2
Very Very Slightly Included

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