Rough or Icy Diamond: Light of Time (Part I)
December is associated to the most beautiful festivities of the year, therefore I chose as stone of the month the most beautiful one: the diamond.
Since I love to discover unusual variations to what is commonly known, I will not speak about the traditional diamond, but about the one I use in my own jewelry: the impure “icy” diamond, massive and opaque but of excellent luster.
What are the main characteristics of this type of diamond?
In the case of the icy diamond we go beyond the ideal standard of the “4 C” – Carat, Color, Clarity, Cut. The quality is given indeed by its wild and natural “character” rather than by purity or cutting variations. Anyhow its characteristics are the same of “classic” diamonds.
Hardness: The first essential feature in all diamonds is suggested by the etymology of the name itself, as it means “indomitable” in ancient Greek. The well-known Mohs scale also tells us that the diamond is the hardest gem on Earth. It does not react with any chemical reagents including strong acids and bases. However the diamond’s extreme hardness does not imply toughness, for that reason it must be cut according to precise crystallographic directions.
Composition: Diamonds consist of carbon atoms arranged in a variation of the face-centered cubic crystal structure called a diamond lattice. Because of its extremely rigid lattice, it can be contaminated by very few types of impurities, such as Boron and Nitrogen.
Cutting: The perfect one for the icy diamond is the rose cut. The boule briolette and the innovative slice cut are also noteworthy.
Brilliance: This feature is given by hardness, refractive light index and gem cutting.
Appearance and color: Icy diamonds show a milky, translucent and opalescent appearance. The color range is very wide, from white to all shades of gray and to the well-known and striking black. Greatly appreciated are also the variations of yellow and red, reaching warm brown tones.
Where to find it
Angola, Australia, Botswana, Congo, Ghana, India, Liberia, Republic of Yakutia (Russian Fed.), Sierra Leone, South Africa, Zimbabwe.