A brilliant is actually a diamond with a round cut. Like most precious stones, the brilliant was also awarded an often unique meaning, although its origins is not always clear. Generally, one sees the brilliant as a symbol of love and forgiveness. There's a reason why it is the most popular cut for an engagement ring. Discover the meaning behind the brilliant and order your jewellery with a brilliant.

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What are brilliant diamonds?

In short, a brilliant diamond is a diamond with a round cut, which was developed by the Antwerp cutter Marcel Tolkowsky. This round cut, with a total of 58 facets, has an optimal reflection of the light. The brilliant cut is the diamond cut with the most sparkles.
3D-afbeelding van een ring met briljant van grote waarde - BAUNAT
Over the centuries, man developed ever better techniques to process sapphires, emeralds, rubies and rough diamonds. Which was originally limited to splitting and polishing, evolved into various cutting techniques.
Only halfway through the 17th century can we mention the first brilliants. These 'Mazarins' had 17 facets at the top, also known as the crown. Venetian cutter Vincent Peruzzi added 16 facets and named the Peruzzi brilliant with 33 facets after himself. At the time, they had not yet mastered the technique of cutting round stones. The first brilliants were therefore rounded squares or rectangles.
We owe the light reflection that makes the brilliant so popular to this day, to Antwerp cutter Marcel Tolkowsky, who formulated a mathematical method for grinding round diamonds with 58 facets in 1919. Thus, he achieved optimal reflection and refraction of light, resulting in sparkling colours. Jewellers call this the fire.
Marcel Tolkowsky perfected cutting round diamonds with 58 facets

What is the brilliant cut?

The terms diamond and brilliant are often mixed up. However, diamond and brilliant are not synonymous.  A diamond is a precious stone that is formed from carbon and its crystal structure changes under extreme pressure and temperature. It is the hardest material that occurs in nature. A brilliant is the round cut form of a diamond, developed by Tolkowsky. Diamonds with the original 'Tolkowsky cut' or subsequent refining of this round cut with more facets, may be called 'brilliant'. So, there is no unequivocal answer to the question as to what is more expensive, diamonds or brilliants.

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Brilliants of great value are held with tweezers - BAUNAT
The brilliant cut is therefore a reference to the round cut that promotes light reflection, not to the cutting quality of the diamond (the 4 famous C's). A brilliant cut diamond can have an Ideal Cut, which is the best possible, but also a Poor Cut, which is the worst. Of all the diamond cuts, the brilliant sparkles the most. It is the perfect stone for a setting in an engagement ring, a classic white gold ring or earrings.

How do you recognize a brilliant?

The cut is distinguished by some typical features: the girdle (the edge around the widest part, which can clamp a setting), the table (octagonal upper surface), at least 32 facets in the crown (above the girdle), at least 24 facets in the pavilion (below the girdle) and the culet (the extreme point at the bottom).
Drawing of a brilliant with the meaning of the parts
Various factors affect the sparkle of a brilliant, such as the crown height and angle, the pavilion depth, the table mirror, the regularity of the girdle, the weight of the culet, the symmetry differences... The dimensions, symmetry and polish in turn determine the quality and value of the brilliant.

Are there any alternatives to brilliants?

Over time, derived round cuts, the so-called fancy cuts such as the pear shape, oval shape and heart shape were also designed. Thus, people with a preference for an original cut were also able to satisfy their taste. An unusual setting can also provide a totally different approach.
Woman with princess cut diamond rings, a replacement for brilliant cuts
The success of alternative cuts lies in the fact that the round brilliant often appears smaller than any other diamond cut with the same carat weight. In terms of brilliance, a square princess cut can certainly hold its own. Princess cut diamonds are squarer than brilliants, and thus up to 30% less material is lost while cutting.

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Alternative cuts often make the stone look bigger
There are some tricks to make a brilliant appear to be bigger. With a solitary ring, a ring with only 1 diamond, the brilliant of course focusses all the attention on itself. But when you choose a halo ring, your brilliant is surrounded by a circle of smaller diamonds that also make the central brilliant appear larger.

Why are brilliants more valuable?

Brilliants today account for 75% of the market and they appear in the highest price range. The reasons? One can basically only cut nearly perfectly eight-plane diamonds into a brilliant, losing at least half of the precious stone. On the other hand, the brilliance hides small imperfections and shadows. With a diamond of slightly lesser quality you can still obtain the maximum light refraction. The value of a brilliant is therefore generally higher than that of a diamond cut in a different form.
What is the meaning of a brilliant? - BAUNAT
Another reason for the popularity of the brilliant is owed to an advertising campaign from the 1940s. To stimulate the sale of diamonds at the time, diamond giant De Beers came up with advertisements in which engagement rings with brilliants played the leading role. Their slogan 'diamonds are forever' wasn't proclaimed the slogan of the century without reason.

Does the brilliant carry a specific meaning?

A brilliant reflects many beautiful human traits, such as perseverance, honesty, purity and cooperation. Giving jewellery with a brilliant is perhaps the ultimate sign of real love. The precious stone undoubtedly owes this positive reputation to its beautiful brilliance. Hence the derived meaning, as in 'a brilliant idea'.

Rings with a brilliant bear witnesses to timeless elegance. Although the first brilliant cuts are dating back to the 17th century, the current brilliant rings are no longer comparable to the rings of those days. Over the years, the brilliance had been tinkered with, ensuring the new models sparkle with extra beauty. They are timeless jewellery that complements any outfit. Because of their simplicity, they are very versatile and are always a true eye-catcher.

Why buy my brilliant jewellery at BAUNAT?

Buying a pair of brilliant earrings or a ring with a brilliant is therefore certainly a good idea. Why should you browse the BAUNAT collection for that? Our experts only work with the very best materials that come directly from the source. Not only are you sure of the quality, but you also get the best price/quality ratio. This unique approach allows you to buy high-quality jewellery as much as 50% cheaper at BAUNAT than from a physical jeweller.

Another advantage at BAUNAT is our tailor-made service. In addition, you can work based on an existing design, or create your own design along with our experts. You are always closely involved in this process and our employees are always there to assist you with information.

You can also quickly enjoy your brilliant jewellery. The delivery period for the jewellery from our standard collection is usually between 1 to 10 working days. For custom jewellery, you must count on 4 working weeks.

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Find out more about brilliants and other precious stones

Did you know there are 10 different cuts, each with their own characteristics? The brilliant is perhaps the most famous. Discover more about diamonds. And you can of course also have a sapphire, ruby or emerald cut in the brilliant form. Read more about different precious stones in the blogs below.
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