Diamonds have been the perfect companion for those special moments in life for many years.Their name comes from the Greek word ‘adamas’, which means ‘unconquerable’, perfect fora stone that is strong, durable and reliable.
The earliest diamonds were found in India in the 4th century BC. However, some of the youngest stones formed 900 million years ago, so diamonds have been around for a very long time. In the first century AD,Roman naturalist Pliny said that the diamond ‘is themost valuable, not only of precious stones, but of all things in this world.’ Due to their popularity and demand, diamonds were transported along the Silk Road to other countries.
They were found to be strong and shiny, as well ascapable of reflecting light and engraving metal. Thismeans they weren’t just used as ornaments in the past,but also as tools.
Diamonds were often used as talismans as well, thought to protect the wearer from evil. During the MiddleAges, people believed these gems to have healing properties, and so they used them as medical aids.
In the early 18th century, India’s diamond suppliesstarted to decline; in 1725, diamond deposits were found in Brazil, which emerged as an important source of this precious stone and dominated the market for over 150 years. Still, those diamonds were too small to meet global demand. In 1866, Erasmus Jacobs was in South Africa exploring the banks of the Orange River when he found what he thought to be a pebble. Yet, the stone turned out to be a 21.25-carat diamond.
In 1871, an 83.50-carat diamond was discovered on Colesberg Kopje in South Africa, which led to the opening of the famous Kimberly Mine. With the increase of the world supply of diamonds due to the opening of this mine, diamonds dropped in value by almost 50% in 1919, although they regained their status in 1947 once more. A major contributor to this was a marketing campaign which popularised the saying ‘diamonds are forever’, which also led to the widespread use of diamond engagement rings. However, diamonds became synonymous with engagement rings as early as 1477, when Archduke Maximilian of Austria asked for Mary of Burgundy’s hand in marriage.
Diamonds are rare and beautiful stones sought after by many around the world due to their longevity and durability — perfect as engagement rings, these stunning gems are a fitting choice for anyone looking for a symbol of eternal love.
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