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KS3 Geography - Conflict Diamonds: Diamonds

A guide to resources about blood diamonds for your Year 9 Geography topic.

10 Facts About Diamond You Should Know

      There's no denying that diamonds are a traditional symbol of romance and love. Why, a man needs a diamond ring to ask the woman of his dream to marry him, right? But was it always that way? Did you know that someone worked very, very hard to make diamond rings de rigueur in marriage proposals? Or that diamonds aren't actually very rare at all?



10 Facts About Diamonds You Should Know:

  1. The Earliest Use of Diamonds: Polishing Axes
  2. Diamonds Are Not The Hardest Substance on Earth
  3. De Beers: The Diamond Cartel
  4. So Why The Name 'De Beers'?
  5. Are Diamonds Rare?
  6. Moon-Sized Diamond
  7. Famous Diamonds
  8. The Most Brilliant Advertising Campaign of All Time: A Diamond Is Forever
  9. Diamonds are Actually Lousy Investments
  10. Artificial Diamonds

How Diamonds are Formed - National Geographic

Clip from National Geographic regarding the formation of diamonds.

(Source of video: youtube)

Picture of Famous Diamonds

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Useful Diamond Websites

What is a Diamond?



      The word Diamond comes from the Greek word Adamas, which means indestructible. It is the only gem known to man that is made of a single element, Carbon, besides graphite. Diamond is completely made of Carbon atoms (Chemical Composition - C) crystallized in a cubic (isometric) arrangement.

How and where are diamonds formed?



       Diamonds form between 120-200 kilometers or 75-120 miles below the earth's surface. According to geologists the first delivery of diamonds was somewhere around 2.5 billion years ago and the most recent was 45 million years ago. According to science, the carbon that makes diamonds comes from the melting of pre-existing rocks in the Earth's upper mantle. There is an abundance of carbon atoms in the mantle.

      Temperature changes in the upper mantle forces the carbon atoms to go deeper where it melts and finally becomes new rock, when the temperature reduces. If other conditions like pressure and chemistry are right then the carbon atoms in the melting crystal rock bond to build diamond crystals.

History of Diamonds


      The Greek word "Adamas" meaning unconquerable and indestructible is the root word of diamond. Diamonds in history have been sought the world over, fought over, worshipped and used to cast love spells.

      For the last 3000 to 4000 years, the history of diamonds has held special magic for Kings, Queens and their subjects. Diamonds have stood for wealth, power, love, spirit and magical powers. Kings in olden days would wear into battle heavy leather breast plates studded with diamonds and other precious stones. It was believed that diamonds were fragments of stars and the teardrops of the Gods. The diamonds possessed magical qualities of the Gods and held powers far beyond the understanding of the common man. Because of these beliefs, the warriors stayed clear of the Kings and others who were fortunate to have the magical diamonds in their breast plates.

      Until the 15thCentury only Kings wore diamonds as a symbol of strength, courage and invincibility. Over the centuries, the history of diamonds acquired unique status as the ultimate gift of love. It was said that cupids' arrows were tipped with diamonds that have a magic that nothing else can equal. Read more...

Diamond Process from the Mine to the Market

(Source of video: youtube)

The Diamond Manufacturing Process

Stage 1 - Mining the Diamond Rough
Stage 2 - Rough Reaches the Market
Stage 3 - Diamond Manufacturing
Stage 4 - The Final Journey

Diamond Quiz

Get smart challenge and see how much you know about diamonds.

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