Can you name the 5 parts of a diamond?

The five main parts of the diamond anatomy are: Table, Crown, Girdle, Pavilion, and Culet.  Let’s start from the top of the diagram and work our way down.

Diamond Table
The Diamond Table is the area on the very top of the stone.  The table is actually one of the diamond facets, the largest since it is on top.  We’ll explain facets below.  The table is very important because it’s the main place where light enters and exits the diamond.

Diamond Crown
Moving down from the table, the Diamond Crown is the side of the diamond between the crown and the girdle.  It contains several types of facets.  In most settings this is the part of the diamond which will be above the prongs that hold the stone in place.  It is the most visible surface area along with the table and is in turn the most susceptible to scratches.

Diamond Girdle
This is the widest part of the diamond.  The Diamond Girdle needs to be just right.  That means not too thick or too thin or it will affect the diamond’s strength.  If a girdle is too thick it could affect the stone’s brilliance and will also make it heavier, in turn more expensive.  This is one example of how to make sure you use these terms to get a good quality stone at a good price.

Diamond Pavilion

Opposite of the crown, the Diamond Pavilion is the bottom portion of the stone. The measurement starts at the girdle and ends at the culet.  This is usually the longest part of the diamond, except for the emerald cut or other rectangular diamond shapes.  The pavilion is often hidden in part under the prongs.  However to increase a diamond’s brilliance some settings try to minimize the area of the pavilion which is obscured.  The more light that can pass through a diamond the more brilliance.

Diamond Culet

Just another facet, the smallest in fact, but maybe the most important.  The Diamond Cutlet is located at the bottom of the pavilion and parallel to the table. The culet can greatly affect the light which enters the stone and then leaves the stone back through the table and to your eye.  The culet needs to be small enough to allow for proper light refraction.  A large culet can give the appearance of a dark spot or even a hole when you look down at the table, clearly a problem.  In some cases diamonds don’t have a culet and the pavilion comes to a point, which is not a problem necessarily.  This is just another example of the importance of diamond certification.  Only a trained expert can properly assess the culet.  The GIA for example uses the following descriptions: none, very small, small, medium, slightly large, large, very large, and extremely large. The term pointed culet refers to a diamond without a culet facet.

Three More Important Terms …


We’ve already referenced this term a few times, how can you avoid it they are everywhere!  A Diamond Facet may be the term people are most familiar with.  Facets are the smooth, polished planes that make up the diamond’s surface.  There could be dozens of facets on a stone.  For example the average round brilliant cut diamond has 58 facets.  Fancy shapes can have even more.  The general rule is that the fewer facets a stone has the less brilliance it will have because it reflects less light.  However cuts with fewer facets have an appeal of their own.  This is where all of the skill comes in cutting a diamond.  The diamond cutter, yes that’s the real term, is responsible to shape the facets in a way that will most effectively reflect light that enters the diamond back out through the table.


Look at this second chart.  Diamond Diameter is exactly what it sounds like, the width of the diamond at the widest part, specifically the girdle.  Looking at the diamond from the top down, this is the distance from side to side.  Incredibly most certification companies measure diameter to the nearest hundredth of a millimeter, that’s 0.01.


Also exactly what is sounds like, Diamond Depth is the measurement of height or depth, starting at the table and ending at the culet.  Just like the diameter, most certification companies measure depth to the nearest hundredth of a millimeter, 0.01.

Now that you know the main terms, you can better understand many different things, for example diamond symmetry.

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