Origins of Rose-Cut Diamonds
The very earliest diamond cuts followed the shape of the natural rough diamond crystal. But innovative cutters began to experiment with changing the shape of the crystal via faceting, developing a new shape called a rose-cut. It featured a prominent, domed crown with varying numbers of triangular facets, which added scintillation & sparkle.
Later rose shapes evolved with more complicated facet arrangements and more pleasing outlines, with the best styles, called Dutch rose-cuts, coming from cutting centers in Amsterdam and Antwerp.
In 1725, discovery of new diamond sources in river gravel in Brazil replaced a dwindling supply out of India. This vast supply of "affordable" diamonds made them popular for European nobility. For fancy evening dress, nothing glimmered better by candlelight than rose-cut diamonds.
The rose-cut's superior brilliance, scintillation and larger surface area ensured a steady following throughout most of the Georgian Era. Although the popularity of this cutting style diminished in 19th century Europe, an American rose-cut was patented circa 1900 and fueled a passion for the cut on yet another continent.
A recent article in 'Modern Jeweler' reports that a recent revival of the rose-cut has caused a supply crisis. Cutters in India are racing to meet the need for rose-cuts to be used by 21st century designers:
"The new love for rose cuts comes almost too late. The remaining population of vintage rose cuts has so dwindled that it is silly to hope that this style of cutting will ever come off the endangered species list. Vintage rose cuts are such rarities, especially clean ones in good shape, that designers hoard the few they can find until they have enough stones for pieces featuring them"
Lang is pleased to offer a fabulous collection that we recently acquired from an avid and discerning collector who sought out and purchased these gorgeous, one-of-a-kind, rose-cut studded gems over half-a-century of diligent searching.
If you'd like to learn more about rose-cut diamonds, please see our full article on Antique Jewelry University.