Vaughan's Jewelers
Shoppes at Brentwood
2801-3E Ward Blvd
Wilson, NC 27893
252-243-5707
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Summer Store Hours
Monday - Friday: 10 am to 6 pm
Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm
Sunday: Closed

April Birthstone – Diamond

Wilson_Diamond_JewelryApril’s birthstone is the diamond. Diamonds are an amazing marvel of nature. Their cold glittering fire has kept us mesmerized for centuries, inspiring passionate myths of romance, intrigue, power, greed, and magic.

Ancient Hindus who found diamonds washed out of the earth after thunderstorms, believed they were produced by bolts of lightning. In this day and age, the diamond symbolizes enduring love, and they often grace engagement rings.

There are many varieties of diamonds: transparent, translucent or opaque; ranging from colorless to sooty black, with many color variations in between. Generally, diamonds that are transparent , colorless or tinted, are used as jewelry. Others are used widely in the jewelry industry.

The color of a diamond is dependent on the type of impurities embedded inside it. Yellow diamonds, for instance, betray small amounts of nitrogen, while boron lends a bluish hue.

Diamond crystals are a tight-fisted network of carbon atoms securely held in four directions, making it the hardest naturally-occurring substance on earth. In order to attain such a compact and strongly-held network of carbon atoms, it is thought that diamonds must crystallize deep under the Earth’s surface.

At these depths exist the proper conditions for the formation of diamonds; at 90 to 120 miles deep, pressures are more than 65,000 times that of the atmosphere at the Earth’s surface, with temperatures exceeding 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit.  These pressures and temperatures, when recreated in laboratories, have successfully yielded synthetic diamonds.

Diamonds are found in alluvial deposits, that is, gravel swept by streams, rivers, glaciers and ocean currents. They are also found in sedimentary rock where gravel deposits and organic material have been compressed into rock. Diamonds can be found in some samples of kimberlite — a type of volcanic rock first discovered in Kimberly, South Africa. Diamonds found in kimberlite are believed to be very old, possibly as much as three billion years old.  Tiny flecks of diamond have even been found inside meteorites.

Diamonds are crystals, crystals being the ultimate form of symmetry in nature. The shape of the crystal reflects the internal orderly arrangement of atoms within it. In diamonds, atoms of carbon are held tightly by covalent bonding, where two neighboring atoms share an electron, giving the diamond crystal great strength.

But in spite of its hardness, diamonds can be cut. This is accomplished by cutting the gem along planes parallel to the faces of the crystal where the tight bonds between carbon atoms are a little weaker.

Found in their natural form, diamonds can appear quite unimpressive. However, when they are cut and polished by skilled craftsmen, allowing the light entering the diamond to be reflected and refracted in the best way possible. Only then is their hidden beauty revealed.