Anatomy of a Diamond
There are numerous types of diamond cuts which can differ wildly in terms of their design and their visual characteristics. However, all diamond cuts can be conceptualized through key features that all diamonds share, such as the crown and the table. It’s important to note that different cuts may not have the same features - for example, the Rose Cut does not have a pavilion while the brilliant or old mine cut do.
Understanding the different aspects of diamond cuts is essential to understanding how the diamond will reflect with light, and what makes each cut so special.
The Crown is the upper section of the diamond, and is most typically the most visible part of the diamond, facing upwards towards the wearer. It incorporates the table (see below) as rows of facets that add depth to the diamond.
The flat central facet of the crown, the Table provides the central point to look into the diamond as well to enable light to shine within the stone to create a dazzling glimmer. The table should be parallel to the girdle to ensure that it is perfectly level.
Forming the largest circumference of the diamond, the girdle is the widest part of the stone and divides the crown from the pavilion. The girdle can be faceted or simply polished. Whilst a highly thin girdle can leave the diamond prone to chipping, an overly thick girdle can affect the overall proportions of the cut diamond.
The part of the diamond below the girdle to the culet. The depth of the pavilion and the angle of its facets are an essential aspect to the sparkle of a diamond, as each facet reflects light back into and in some cases out of, the diamond.
The culet is the point of the bottom of the pavilion. Whilst antique cuts such as the Old Mine and Rose Cut have large culets, newer cuts, namely the Brilliant Cut, have a largely invisible and sharp culet due to the precision of the facets. Sharp culets have a slightly higher risk of chipping, although this is mitigated by proper setting.
A diamond’s depth refers to the height of the diamond from the table to the culet.