What is a Modern Brilliant Cut Diamond? | The Diamond Reserve

What is a Modern Brilliant Cut Diamond?

A brilliant cut diamond isn’t just a popular style, it’s a marvel of engineering, meticulously designed to maximize a diamond’s light performance. Its origins can be traced back to the early 20th century when Marcel Tolkowsky, a mathematician and diamond cutter, published his groundbreaking research on light and its interaction with diamonds. His calculations established the ideal proportions and facet arrangement which are still used today, for a diamond cut to achieve the most brilliance and fire.

A Brief History of the Brilliant Cut Diamond 

After the 15th century when craftsmen figured out diamonds could be used to cut other diamonds began a quest to unleash the ultimate inner beauty of the stone. The first brilliant-esque cut was created in the 17th century, and then the old European cut, considered the predecessor to the modern brilliant, was popular in the 18th and 19th centuries. These old cuts were fashioned by hand and designed to sparkle in candle light. Regardless of the era and type of lighting available, brilliants were always designed to maximize a diamond’s natural sparkle and fire.

In 1919 Belgian gemologist and mathematician Marcel Tolkowsky published “Diamond Design: A Study of the Reflection and Refraction of Light in Diamond” where he discussed how to cut a diamond using specific angles and proportions to maximize its brilliance. When a diamond is cut and polished according to Marcel’s scientific calculations, light enters the stone through the top, bounces around the facets, and exits back through the top creating maximum fire, brilliance and scintillation. His mathematical formula is still used, with adjustments to account for new technology.

A brilliant cut is any diamond or gemstone that’s been cut with numerous facets in order to exhibit brilliance, commonly known as sparkle. This brilliance is the result of light pouring in and bouncing off the facets of the conical shape of the stone resulting in the iconic sparkly appearance. The cut of a diamond determines its light performance and doesn’t affect its shape; the most common type of brilliant is the round brilliant, but many other shapes including a pear or oval can be cut in this style.

What is a Modern Brilliant Cut Diamond?

The modern brilliant cut has been hundreds of years in the making, and is one of the most popular and widely used diamond cuts. Cut is one of the most crucial elements to consider, because it determines the sparkle, and thus beauty of a diamond. The better a diamond has been cut, the greater its ability to reflect and refract light. A well-cut diamond is proportioned so most of the light entering the gem exits back through the top, perfectly balancing the white light (brilliance) with intense flashes of colorful fire (dispersion). 

The brilliant cut is designed using precise mathematical formulas to achieve maximum light performance. The most common type of brilliant cut diamond today is the round brilliant.

Modern cutting techniques incorporate the following advancements:

  • Computer-Aided Design (CAD): Modern cutters utilize sophisticated CAD software to simulate light performance and optimize facet placement for maximum brilliance.
  • Laser Cutting: Laser technology allows for unparalleled precision and consistency in facet creation, ensuring perfect angles and minimizing imperfections.
  • Symmetry and Polish: Modern cutting techniques achieve a new level of symmetry and polish, enhancing the diamond’s overall brilliance and fire.

When it comes to sparkle, you won’t achieve a more lively appearance than a brilliant cut diamond. Be it round, oval, cushion, princess or pear, brilliant cuts exude an unrivaled fire and make a perfect choice for those who love sparkles. If you’re looking to design a custom ring with extra sparkle, give us a call at 303-385-8449 or click here to schedule an appointment.