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The first known diamonds discovered by humans happened about 700 or 800 BCE in India by the Dravidian people. In fact, this is where we get the unit of weight for diamonds, carats, from; they would weight the diamonds in relation to the seeds of carob tree.

A carat is a unit of measurement and it’s the unit used to weight a diamond. One carat is equal to 200 milligrams, or one fifth of a gram. There are 5 carats in a gram.

While there is a general correlation of weight to size, diamonds with the same carat weight can vary greatly in terms of their actual dimensions. When weighing less than one carat, the diamond’s weight is expressed in “points”: each carat is divided into 100 points, for example:

  • 0.75ct. = 75 points
  • 1/2ct. = 0.50ct. or 50 points
  • 1/4ct. = 0.25ct. or 25 points

Diamond Carat Weight Chart

As carat weight gets larger, the value of the diamond increases disproportionately. This is because pieces of rough material are increasingly rare with size.

Deciding on carat size is really about striking a balance between size, quality, affordability, and personal preference. If  she’s made it clear that her heart is set on something large and you are working within a budget, you can still find a larger diamond of excellent quality gem by selecting one which is graded slightly lower in terms of color and clarity.

You will hear various guidelines such as “the engagement ring should cost 2-3 months salary”, but a better consideration is what can be afforded. Start with the best cut grade that you can afford.

Cut refers to the proportions and finish created when transforming a rough diamond into a polished diamond. Of the four C’s, cut has the most influence on a diamond’s brilliance, radiance and beauty.

The maximum light returned will often make the diamond look larger than it’s true carat weight. A superior cut will result in light being returned to the eye from the entire top of the diamond. It is the cut that can impact significantly both the actual dimensions and apparent size of the diamond.


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