Throughout human history, diamonds have captured our imagination with their beauty and rarity. Diamonds – formed under high temperature and pressure conditions deep beneath the earth’s surface – are the hardest natural material on earth, and derive their name from the ancient Greek adamas, meaning, “unbreakable”. In ancient India, it was said that “he who wears a diamond will see danger turn away”, as the purity and refractive capacity of diamonds were thought to symbolize invincibility.
Diamonds later came to represent the “unbreakable” in a different respect, through their use in engagement rings. The first known creation of diamond rings can be traced to ancient Rome, where diamonds were valued primarily for their presumed ability to ward off evil. But the use of diamonds for the specific purpose of engagement rings isn’t thought to have begun until the time of the Renaissance; in 1477, the Archduke Maximilian of Austria gave a diamond “betrothal” ring to Mary of Burgundy, causing the practice to become fashionable among the upper classes. In 1947, the modern association of the everlasting stone with the marital bond was cemented by the De Beers slogan, “A Diamond is Forever”.
In today’s unpredictable economy, a diamond can still offer protection – not as a magical talisman, but as a hard asset investment. There is a sense of security that comes with an investment you can hold in your hand: for instance, many people invest in diamonds as a gift to hand down to their loved ones. Furthermore, due to the durability and portability of diamonds – not to mention the fact that they have no correlation to other assets – fancy color diamonds are considered a very secure, even recession-proof investment. The more things change, the more they stay the same!