by Suzanne Sachs • 5 min read
The old European cut diamond is a time-honored choice for an engagement ring and can be a stunning choice for any couple. Learning more about the rich history of an old European cut diamond can help you decide if this is the best diamond cut to share with your partner and begin a lifetime of happy anniversaries.
What You Need To Know---
About the Old European Cut
The old European cut diamond shape, also called the old Euro cut or round old mine cut, is a predecessor in the evolution of the modern round brilliant. The stone still has a round shape and 58 facets, but is hand-cut rather than precision cut with automatic guidance. This means the stone may have less symmetry than modern diamonds, though that does give the stone individuality and character that may be missing from stones without that hands-on touch.
Cut to maximize carat weight rather than focusing on brilliance and sparkle, old European cut diamonds were shaped and polished with candlelight in mind, rather than brighter artificial lighting. This means the stone’s color may be a shade or two warmer with a tinge of yellow or brown rather than a clear, colorless hue. These stones still have an inner fire, however, giving them charismatic glitter to draw the eye.
The stone’s shape is also eye-catching. With a higher crown and smaller table than modern round brilliant cuts, an old European cut stone will look larger and present a taller profile than stones of similar carat weight. A larger culet on the bottom of the stone can also be seen and will show as a distinct circle when looking down through the stone, and the girdle is “frosted” or unfaceted, unlike more modern cuts that typically add a few extra facets along that thin edge.
History of Old European Cut Engagement Rings
Cut between 1890 and the mid-1930s, these diamonds are particularly popular in Art Deco engagement ring styles, as well as some Victorian engagement rings and Edwardian engagement rings. Because old European cut diamonds predate modern wars, territorial claims, and drug trafficking, they are considered conflict-free and more eco-friendly than modern stones.
Finding an Old European Cut Engagement Ring in a Modern Market
Unfortunately, there are fewer old European and mine cut diamonds available every year. While the stone shape is very popular in older styles and can typically be found in antique engagement rings, a common practice is to recut the stone into a more modern shape, and therefore its unique character and charm is diminished or lost. Reputable vintage dealers, however, can help find and authenticate old European cut diamonds.
Couples interested in this unique stone shape will need to be flexible and may want to consider stones with warmer tones. Setting those stones in yellow or rose gold will complement the diamond’s beauty and add further authenticity to its age and distinction. Settings such as clusters, bezels, and solitaires that highlight the unusual height of the old European cut are especially popular and showcase exactly what makes these diamonds unique and eye-catching, but take care that the stone is properly protected and will not snag or snare as it is worn.
Despite their increasing rarity, old European cut diamonds are stars within the Hollywood elite. Couples that choose an old European cut engagement ring will find themselves in sparkling company, including Miley Cyrus, Mary-Kate Olsen, and Scarlett Johansson.
With such a special look, there can be no more special stone to choose for that most special ring than an old European cut. This elegant shape lends a timeless look to any engagement ring, and is the perfect choice for a relationship sure to stand the test of time.
Vintage Rings For Everyone
No matter which era is your favorite, these time-honored rings have a rich history and individualized character and will continue to have a timeless beauty and elegant appeal that is part of a legacy to pass on to future generations.
Find The Perfect Engagement Ring
Antique diamond rings are prized not only for their beauty but also for their exquisite attention to detailing and design. If you’re looking for a ring with a sense of glamour, sophistication and vintage charm, explore our collection of old European cut diamond engagement rings today.