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All about diamonds

Diamonds have fascinated us for centuries. These precious gems, treasured for their rarity and brilliance, hold a special place in the world of jewellery. But past their appearance, they have a rich history and a complex grading system to determine their quality and value.

A Short History

The journey of diamonds began nearly 4,000 years ago when they were first discovered by humans in the caves of India. Most diamonds, formed deep within the Earth's mantle, found their way to the surface through ancient volcanic eruptions. As these volcanoes erupted, diamonds were carried to the surface, where they were eventually unearthed by curious explorers.

These rough diamonds, unpolished and uncut, captivated the imagination of early civilisations. Believed to have divine origins due to their brilliance and hardness, diamonds became symbols of power and prestige among royalty and nobility. For over a thousand years, India remained the sole source of natural diamonds until their discovery in other regions, leading to a global trade in these precious gems.

The Four C’s

When it comes to evaluating diamonds, experts consider four essential factors known as the Four C's: Cut, Clarity, Color, and Carat weight.


The cut of a diamond refers to its shape and proportions, which directly impact its brilliance and sparkle. Diamonds come in various cuts, from the classic round cut to the elegant emerald, there's a cut to suit every style and preference. Other examples include the romantic heart shape, the modern princess cut and timeless pear shapes.


Clarity measures the presence of inclusions and blemishes within a diamond. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) grades diamonds on a scale from Flawless (no inclusions visible under 10x magnification) to Included (obvious inclusions visible to the naked eye). Understanding clarity grades can help you choose diamonds with the right balance of purity and value. Below you can find a descriptions and the abbreviations for each clarity:

  • Flawless (FL): No inclusions and no blemishes visible under 10x magnification
  • Internally Flawless (IF): No inclusions visible under 10x magnification
  • Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2): Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification
  • Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2): Inclusions are observed with effort under 10x magnification, but can be characterised as minor
  • Slightly Included (SI1 and SI2): Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification
  • Included (I1, I2, and I3): Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which may affect transparency and brilliance

Choosing a clarity grade depends on your personal preference and budget, with some imperfections being acceptable at lower grades while maintaining the diamond's beauty and value.


The colour of a diamond is based on the absence of colour. This is graded on a scale from D (colourless) to Z (light yellow or brown). Colourless diamonds are extremely rare and valuable, while those with faint hues are more affordable. Choosing the right colour grade depends on personal preference and budget considerations.

  • D: No detectable colour
  • D, E, F: Extremely rare and valuable 
  • G, H: Good value diamonds
  • I and below: Colour becomes more visible


Carat weight measures the size of a diamond, with one carat equal to 0.2 grams. Larger diamonds are typically more valuable, but carat weight alone does not determine a diamond's quality. Balancing carat weight with cut, clarity, and colour is essential when selecting the perfect diamond.

A Guide to Buying Online

When buying diamonds, it's essential to consider your budget and priorities. Opting for slightly lower clarity or colour grades  can help maximise brilliance without breaking the bank. Similarly, choosing a diamond with a slightly smaller carat weight can be more budget-friendly while still achieving a stunning appearance.

Shopping for diamonds online offers convenience and access to a wide range of options. Buying from reputable sellers who provide detailed information about each diamond's cut, clarity, colour, and carat weight is crucial. This information can be found in our product description for all our diamond jewellery.

Diamonds hold a timeless appeal that can be passed down for generations. Understanding the Four C's and making informed choices can help you find the perfect diamond that reflects your style, budget, and values.

We are so excited to help with your diamond jewellery purchases! At Sapphire Jewellers, we offer a variety of diamonds, from our online collections to bespoke engagement rings. 

To learn more about our bespoke engagement services, please do not hesitate to reach out! 

Visit us at: Sapphire Jewellers, 26 The Burges, Coventry, CV1 1HL
Or call us on: 02476 225 391


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