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Antique Diamond Cut Guide

Antique diamond jewelry owes much of its appeal to old-fashion cutting techniques. Before diamond cutting became an exact science, the fashioning of diamond rough was an art. Each finished jewel reflected the labor, and talent, of the craftsman who shaped it.

The earliest diamond cuts, point cuts, were simple refinements of the diamond's natural octahedral shape. As tools evolved, the table cut was developed; one of the points was ground into a flat surface, and facets were added. The rose cut has facets that meet in a point at the center, like the petals of a rosebud; it was popular from the sixteenth century to the early 1900s.

The full-cut brilliant made its debut in the late 1600s. It had the same number of facets (58) as today's modern brilliant; the difference is in the proportions. The Old Mine Cut, an early version of this style, often has a cushion shape. The Old European Cut is a more refined version, and the direct ancestor of the modern brilliant. The most distinguishing feature of an Old European Cut diamond is its open culet; instead of coming to a point at the bottom, the diamond has a small flat facet. It usually has a smaller table and higher crown than modern-cut stones, and is usually seen in rings from the 1870s through the 1930s. The early 1900s also saw the popularity of the Asscher cut, a square diamond with cropped corners, often referred to as a "square emerald cut."

Antique diamonds are a favorite of those looking for something unique. They are often said to have a softer, more romantic glow than precision-cut modern stones. Their popularity has surged in recent years, so much so that modern cutters have started to fashion new versions of old cuts, such as the Cushion and the Royal Asscher.

Our next article is about Asscher Cut Diamonds >>


Other Articles:
Diamond Carat
Diamond Clarity
Diamond Color
Diamond Cut
Asscher Cut Diamonds
Jewelry Metals
Engagement Ring Styles
Celebrity Engagement Rings
History of Engagement Rings
Antique Engagement Rings Gallery
Proposal Guide
Proposing on a Grand Scale
Buying an Engagement Ring on a Budget
How to Clean and Care for Your Engagement Ring