They Weren’t Always Called “Diamonds”

As with many things in the English language, we’ve gotten accustomed to the word “Diamond” and adopted it as a permanent descriptor of the beautiful, radiant gemstones that humans across the glove adore. But before “diamonds” there were several other terms.

A Common Movie Reference

In Olde English, diamonds were referred to as adamant. Adamant was used to describe legendary rocks and minerals, mainly diamonds as well as lodestone.

“Wait,” you’re probably thinking, “I’ve heard that term before”. Actually, you’ve probably heard it several times.

If you’ve seen an X-Men movie then you’re likely familiar with the term Adamantium, the fictional metal that Wolverine’s body is infused with. That term was derived from the Olde English term for diamonds. In addition, the word gained a second meaning in English. If you’re adamant about something, it means your resolve is hardened and you refuse to have your mind changed.

In fact, if you watch enough movies, you’ll likely see several references to the term ‘adamant’. That isn’t directors just making up cool sounding words (well, most of the time). It’s an actual reference to the origins of the word diamond.
Last Names

Another term that’s often referred to is diamant, a French term that is still used to describe diamonds (direct translation). While the French term was used to create the word ‘diamond,’ it’s also embedded in their culture. For example, Diamante is a very common surname in French and German.

America, however, was a bit less creative when it came to embedding their names with diamond references; this is of course referring to celebrities such as musical legend Neil Diamond.

Tracing It Back To Latin

As with all good words, diamonds also has Latin roots. The word ‘adamas’ referred to anything that was inflexible, hard or unyielding. This applied to lodestone (magnetite) as well as diamond, so the two stones were referred to the same before humanity realized the differences in their use and aesthetics. Magnetite is an extremely magnetic, charcoal-colored, coal-like rock that doesn’t have nearly the aesthetic appeal as diamonds do, so the terms were later split to identify between the two.

If you’ve ever been to a Geologist’s house, you’ve likely seen Lodestone. Geologists love to collect rocks and Lodestone happens to be one of the more affordable ones.

If you were to see a chunk of diamond in their house, however, it would be double-encased in bulletproof glass with cameras, laser-censors and multiple security guards taking care of it.

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