12 Interesting Facts About Diamonds

Diamond gem with reflection on blue background
Diamond gem with reflection on blue background. Photo: Big Stock

The sparkly ever-so mesmerizing diamond is the most sought-after gemstone in the world and rightly so.

It is not just blindingly beautiful but also incredibly sturdy while being among the rarest gems buried deep under the Earth, so it’s only natural that people gravitate toward this earthy marvel.

Those that are moderately educated about these precious stones know about the 4-Cs of diamonds, but despite being so popular, not much is known about their history, myths and legends. If you randomly asked a person to give you facts on the gemstone, they’d most likely just tell you that it’s an exquisite stone worth millions. While there is much truth to that statement, there is a lot that is not being said.

Yes, diamonds are exotic and unquestionably treasurable, but it is also the lord of myths that add so much more to its uniqueness. But that’s not all; there are also several structural facets of diamonds that remain unknown to many. We believe that not knowing the many cultural and compositional facts regarding this dazzling mineral is a disservice to it, and we seek to right this wrong. So, here are the top twelve most unusual facts about diamonds.

Divine Tears

Perfectly cut diamond

Among the most ancient and widespread folklore about diamonds is the Roman belief that diamonds were the tears of gods.

Perhaps the heavenly beauty of the diamond seemed too delicate to be terrestrial for the Romans, so they deemed it divine.

Diamonds and Love

The ancient Romans believed that Cupid’s arrow was tipped with diamonds. This myth is considered the oldest connection ever made between love and diamonds. Clearly, Romans were in love with this royally precious stone!

The Most Valuable Item

When we said, Romans were in love with diamonds (to be fair, who isn’t?), we meant head-over-heels irreversibly, deeply in love! Because they believed that the diamond was the most valuable thing on the planet. The famous Roman naturalist, Pliny said, “Diamond is the most valuable, not only of precious stones but of all things in this world.”

Everyone knows that diamonds are exceptionally sturdy, but what they don’t know is that the Herkimer Diamond is a direct representation of this very fact. The name ‘Diamond’ is believed to be derived from the Greek word Adamas (it is also what the Greeks called diamonds) which means indestructible or invincible.

Moreover, it is believed that diamonds are supposedly the hardest substance in the world.

Composition and Sturdiness of Diamonds

Diamond MineralDiamonds are generally made of only carbon molecules linked together in tetrahedral bonds. It is possibly why they are super stout and almost impossible to crack. In addition to giving a diamond its solid build, the carbon molecules keep it transparent. However, sometimes a specimen can have tints of other shades such as blue or yellow when there’s an inclusion. It doesn’t happen often, but when nitrogen or boron particles end up in the composition of a diamond stone, it turns a little yellow or blue. 

Eons Aged Old

Diamonds are not only the rarest and sturdiest; they are also one of the oldest gemstones that take millions of years to form under the Earth. In some cases, a diamond can be up to three million years old.

It is believed that diamonds were mined as early as the fourth century BC. Indians used to collect and trade this glorious gem, which serves as proof of the early existence of diamonds.

Diamonds and Divinity

Ancient Hindus used to tuck diamonds as the eyes on their devotional statues. They also believed that a diamond could keep a person safe from danger. In other words, traditional Hindus associated godly attributes with these gemstones.

The Largest Diamond

The largest diamond was discovered in South Africa in 1905 and was named the Cullinan diamond. It weighed 3106 carats and was gifted to King Edward. However, it was later cut up into smaller pieces, out of which three are showcased in the Tower of London as part of the Crown Jewels.

The largest diamond discovered in North America was mined from Dominion Diamond in Calgary, Canada. It has a diameter of 1.5 inches and a height of over two inches.

The First-Ever Diamond Ring

Diamond is the go-to gem for engagement rings. Whether a person is rich or poor, they make sure to get a diamond ring for their partner. But have you ever wondered who the first person to use the exotic stone on a ring was? Legend has it that, in 1477, Archduke Maxmillian of Austria gave Mary of Burgundy a gold ring with an ‘M’ on top constructed with diamonds.

Planet of Diamonds   

A round brilliant cut diamond set in a ring
A round brilliant cut diamond set in a ring  (Wikipedia)

Imagine stumbling across a world made of diamonds and no not an imaginary world, a real one, wouldn’t that be amazing? Because now you can, if you become an astronaut. In 2006, scientists discovered a planet in the solar system made of 100% carbon, and they believe that 1.3% of it is pure diamond. 

Another mind-blowing diamond-related discovery in astronomy came in the form of a star, made of ten billion trillion (is that even a number?) carats. It was named Lucy after the hit Beatles song Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. 

Sources of Diamond Over the Years

In the 1400s, India was the world’s original source of diamonds. Diamonds mined in India were sold to Venice and other European trade centers. However, three centuries later, in the 1700s, India’s diamond supply declined drastically and Brazil emerged as the most significant source of this precious stone. Brazil enjoyed its status as the top diamond supplier until the late 1800s, and after that, South Africa took over the title. 

However, in today’s world, many countries around the globe contribute to diamond production.

Faux Diamonds

Naturally formed diamonds take a while to acquire their shape and composition, which is one of the reasons why they are so expensive. But now experts are making diamonds under controlled conditions in laboratories. And the good news is that the quality and texture is the same as their natural counterparts, but nonetheless, they are synthetic diamonds and are not worth nearly as much as a natural diamond of the same quality and cut.

Diamonds and Healing

In medieval times, people believed that diamonds could cure ailments and nurse back the sick to health. Moreover, some kings in ancient times considered the diamond stone a talisman for soldiers that would bring victory during battles.

The Bottom Line

The extraterrestrial features associated with diamonds may or may not be true; however, their magnificence shall always remain uncontested and will remain the world standard for engagements.


What Do Gemstones Tell Us?


The ever-so elegant, breathtakingly beautiful and alluring gemstones used to accessorize outfits and adorn the human body do not just have a high monetary value, but also has to some an immutable mystical significance. It is true that people pay hefty amounts of money to possess jewels embellished with gems that were curated from the Earth’s center, but their worth is much more valuable for some. Whether the attributes associated with gemstones are accurate or not is a different debate altogether; nonetheless, the connection between the two cannot be denied.

Even if someone doesn’t believe in their symbolism and rebuffs all supposed properties assigned to material things, it wouldn’t change the fact that gemstones have been regarded as sacred objects for centuries. Keeping that in mind, we are here to discuss the meaning given to gems without questioning the rationale behind them. So, without further ado, let’s dive into gemstone symbolism.

Here is a list of legends and the resulting mythical narratives given to some of the most popular gemstones.


This crimson beauty is one of the most enthralling natural stones and is known for its color and hardness. Due to its color, many civilizations in the past believed it to hold the power of life.

Ancient Hindus would present ruby to their God Krishna as they believed doing so would make them emperors in the next life. Christians also hold the ruby dear because it’s mentioned in the Bible four times that it represents beauty and wisdom.

Ruby, which comes from the Sanskrit word Ratnaraj, meaning king of precious stones, was considered lucky in many cultures, especially among European royalties and upper class of the medieval times. The ancient elite in Europe would collect ruby stones because it was believed that having one guarantees wealth, wisdom, success in love and good health.

In sum, the ruby is known to signify vitality, prosperity and royalty.


Lapis Lazuli is among the gems that are associated with deities and royalties. It is because of this association that we got the distinctive color categorization ‘royal blue.’

Egyptians believed that Lapis came from the heavens and provided protection in the afterlife, which is why they kept the stone in their graves and used it to make statues of their gods, totemic objects and burial masks.

Egyptians were not the only ones to regard Lapis as a gemstone that provides safety in the afterlife; many cultures in Asia, Africa and Europe also believed so and would bury it with the dead.

During the time of Renaissance, painters used Lapis to produce ultramarine pigment for their paintings by crushing the stone to dust so as to add a touch of reality.

Lapis is a stone that is supposed to bring enlightenment and awareness. In other words, possessing a lapis lazuli stone gives wisdom and the ability to see and understand the truth.


The Emerald is one of the many stones given to King Solomon by God or so narrated by legend. It was a gift to the king that endowed him with power over all creation. The Incas, people of the Inca Empire of Pre-Columbian America, used it to make jewelry and conduct religious ceremonies. However, the Spanish would trade it for other more valuable stones such as gold.  

The Emerald is supposed to grant psychic powers to the wearer; some ancient civilizations believed that keeping it under the tongue would reveal the truth and show the future. Now, however, the emerald is associated with peace and balance. People think that it provides inner peace and relieves stress. A factor behind this idea could be the color of the stone. Since the color green symbolizes harmony, growth and emotional well-being; hence, the emerald stone is also assigned similar properties. 

Not a bad idea if it works, noting the turmoil we are subjected to at this time.


Although amber is not an earthy stone and is actually fossilized tree resin, it is still recognized as a gem. In the mythology of the Northern German people, called the Norse folklore, Freyr, the God of fertility’s tears would turn into gold and amber stones when she cried because her husband was away.

Furthermore, amber is associated with light and electricity and is believed to result from the concealment of sunlight. If only Edison knew! Because of this connection to the sun, amber carries the reputation of being a nurturing, warm stone used to provide comfort to the ill.  

In the time of ancient Greeks, this yellowish stone was highly regarded as it was sacred to the Greek God of Apollo. Lastly, the Chinese once believed that amber is the soul of a dead tiger transformed into the rocky shape of the sunny gem.


Early gem experts regarded topaz as a stone that was capable of protecting against diseases, untimely death, strengthening the intellect, lessening sadness and anger and eliminating cowardice. It was also believed that topaz could cool down boiling water and emit light. 

Legend has it that the mystic Roman Catholic Saint of Hildegard of Bingen claimed that she read prayers in a darkened church with the light emitted from a topaz stone.

Since topaz has long been associated with creating light and reducing negativity, it is believed to provide mental clarity, positivity and the ability to focus on the wearer.   


Garnet is also one of the stones gifted to King Solomon by God. It was also used by Prophet Noah to light up his ark; hence it is associated with the removal of darkness and imbuement of life, passion and love.

Garnet is considered a totem that brings good luck and eliminates dangers and distress. It is given to travelers for a safe return or people trying their hand at business as it is supposed to bring good fortune. It is also known for removing emotional distress between lovers, especially if caused due to distance.

Although these are only a few of the gemstones with the meanings behind them, there are many more, but these are enough to give you an idea of the legendary and mystical significance gems carry. With that said, it’s possible that all the stories regarding gems aren’t real, but many people worldwide believe in them (possibly psychologically) benefit from their unfaltering belief. But whether these legends are true or false, why would it matter if people do feel better when they are in their possession?