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Carat Weight

Diamond weight is measured in carats.

The name, carat, was derived from the use of carob seeds. Ancient jewelers used carob seeds to balance their scales and determine how much a diamond weighed. Carob seeds were used as weights on precision scales because of their reputation for having a uniform weight. Today the carat is a universally accepted metric measurement.

A full or exact 1 carat diamond is 200 milligrams or 1/5 of a gram. There are 100 carat points to a full carat. Therefore, a half-carat stone may be referred to as a "50-pointer" or "50-points". Carat weight is the easiest of the 4 C 's for gemologists to determine because of the use of sophisticated measuring equipment.

Carat is the measure of weight of a diamond. It does not measure size, nor should it be confused with "karat," a measure of gold purity. There are some misconceptions when considering the carat weight of a diamond. Many people believe size and carat weight are the same.

Two diamonds of equal carat weight might vary in size (diameter) depending upon their cut. When mounted, one diamond may appear larger than the other, although they actually weigh the same. This is important because cut has a major impact on the brilliancy of a diamond.

Larger diamonds are found relatively infrequently in nature. What also makes a bigger diamond so desirable is that it shows off a stone's fine color and cut, and therefore its brilliance, to its best advantage.

While larger diamonds are highly prized, diamonds of equal size may vary widely in value and brilliance, depending on their qualities color.

To choose the ideal carat weight, consider Because large diamonds are rare, they generally have a greater value per carat. For example, the price of a two-carat stone will be several times higher than four 50-pointers of equal quality. the following:

  • The recipient's personal style, finger size, and the size and style of the setting
  • Keep in mind that the smaller the finger, the larger the diamond will appear. A 1½-carat diamond solitaire looks much larger on a size 4 finger than a size 8.
  • If you have already chosen a setting, make sure you choose a diamond that looks appropriate in the ring.

Carat Weight


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