Dating diamonds

He is presently employed in the Space & Atmospheric Sciences Group at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Radiometric dating--the process of determining the age of rocks from the decay of their radioactive elements--has been in widespread use for over half a century.

Pliny the Elder, in his 78 AD encyclopedia, also spoke of diamonds.

In fact, this is where we get the unit of weight for diamonds, carats, from; they would weigh the diamonds in relation to the seeds of carob tree.

Diamonds appear in ancient tales dating back to at least 2500 years ago, including ones involving Alexander the Great and Sinbad the Sailor.

These included table size, crown height, length of the lower half facets, total depth, and culet size.

This progression has resulted in diamonds from different periods having quite distinct appearances.

Well, believe it or not, diamonds really aren’t all that rare.

In fact, the reason diamonds cost so much is more due to savvy (and sometimes unethical) business practices and incredibly successful advertising campaigns than the actual inherent value of the stone based on supply and demand, something anyone who has actually tried to sell a diamond quickly comes to realize.

Over time, table facets have become larger, culets smaller, and star facets and lower half facets longer.

If you rock or tilt one of the older-style gems, you’ll see a different face-up pattern of light and dark than you would with a contemporary brilliant-cut.

An expensive meal at a fancy restaurant, a declaration of romance, and a big, fat diamond ring- this is a pretty standard formula for an engagement proposal.

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