What Is A Marquise Cut Diamond?

Marquise cut diamond engagement ring

A marquise cut diamond is a modified brilliant cut with two points (at each end), complimented by an elegant elongated surface. If you want to accentuate diamond (carat) size and brilliance, the marquise cut diamond certainly offers that unique difference.

Brilliant cut diamonds radiate from their core with the round cut being the most popular, according to the Gemological Institute of America. However, many other brilliant cuts such as the oval, cushion, pear, and heart remain just as awe-inspiring. So what makes the marquise diamond a cut above the rest?

History of the Marquise Cut Diamond

The origins of the marquise cut diamond can be found in 18th century France. It is said that King Louis XV commissioned a royal jeweler to design a diamond that resembled the lips of the woman who had stolen his heart.

The Marchioness Madame de Pompadour, Jean Antoinette Poisson, was King Louis XV’s object of desire, leading to a timeless cut desired for centuries to come.

The “marquise” is a hereditary namesake between duke and count, and those with the title often wore a marquise cut diamond. In fact, marquise diamonds are known by their French name, “navette” diamonds, which translates to “little ship” in English. The marquise cut is also widely used for gems such as rubies and sapphires as well.

History of the Marquise Cut Diamond

Marquise Diamond: Overview

The marquise cut diamond boasts the largest crown surface of any diamond, carat for carat. This is due to their long and narrow presence, creating the illusion of considerable size.

If you want to maximize the grandiose of your diamond, the marquise cut is certainly the best option. A marquise cut diamond has the ability to make the finger of its wearer more slender.

Marquise Diamond: Overview

Marquise Diamond: Cut Guidelines

Like any diamond, choosing the appropriate cut for you, or your partner’s preference is important. The marquise cut diamond is certainly no different in this respect.

The length to width ratio, or LW ratio, is an essential aspect to consider. The classic marquise cut diamond will have an LW ratio of 1.75, 1.95, or 2.15. Remember, the symmetry of your marquise diamond is paramount.

Keep this in mind when searching for your marquise diamond:

  • The two points of the diamond need to be aligned.
  • The left and right surfaces should be a mirror image of one another.
  • Symmetry is vital to the setting.
  • A marquise cut diamond should be set with prongs.
  • Look for flaws at the points that may affect the integrity of the diamond.
Marquise Diamond: Cut Guidelines

Marquise Diamond: Cut Integrity

Since symmetry and the cut significantly impact the brilliance of your marquise diamond. Depth, girdle, culet, table percentage, and LW ratio are all crucial cut factors.

“A diamond’s cut is crucial to the stone’s final beauty and value. And of all the diamond 4Cs, it is the most complex and technically difficult to analyze,” explains the GIA.

Here are some cut values to help guide you while searching for a marquise diamond:

Excellent Cut Marquise

  • LW Ratio: 1.85 - 2.00
  • Table: 53% to 63%
  • Depth: 58% to 62%
  • Culet: None
  • Girdle: Very thin - minor thickness
Excellent Cut Marquise

Very Good Cut Marquise

  • LW Ratio: 1.75 - 1.84 or 2.01 - 2.15
  • Table: 52% or 64% - 65%
  • Depth: 56% - 57.9% or 62.1% - 66%
  • Culet: Very small
  • Girdle: Very thin - minor thickness
Very Good Cut Marquise

Good Cut Marquise

  • LW Ratio: 1.65 - 1.74 or 2.16 - 2.30
  • Table: 51% or  66% - 68%
  • Depth: 53% - 55.9% or 66.1% to 71%
  • Culet: small
  • Girdle: Very thin - thick
Good Cut Marquise

Marquise Diamond: Color Integrity

Marquise cut diamond color subjective and depends on size. Some people prefer G to H color grades over colorless marquise diamonds, however, understanding color integrity for marquise diamonds can help you make an educated decision. For instance, marquise cut diamonds over one carat may have darker points than those lower in carat weight. This could play a role when you're looking at color grade for your marquise diamond.

The GIA diamond color chart is a great resource when you’re doing diamond research. “...Diamond charts have in common is that they’re derived from one standard – the GIA Color Scale.”

Excellent Color Marquise

  • < 0.50 Carat: D to G
  • 0.50 - 1 Carat: D to F
  • 1 - 2 Carat: D to F
  • 2+ Carat: D to F
  • Fluorescence: None
Excellent Color Marquise

Very Good Color Marquise

  • < 0.50 Carat: H to I
  • 0.50 - 1 Carat: G
  • 1 - 2 Carat: D to F
  • 2+ Carat: D to F
  • Fluorescence: Slight to medium
Very Good Color Marquise

Good Color Marquise

  • < 0.50 Carat: J to K
  • 0.50 - 1 Carat: H to I
  • 1 - 2 Carat: G to H
  • 2+ Carat: G
  • Fluorescence: Strong
Good Color Marquise

Your Marquise Diamond

In order to make the most of your marquise cut diamond purchase, try and remember a few of these key elements. Style-wise, marquise diamonds can make the wearer’s finger appear more slender. Symmetry is absolutely vital for the most awe-inspiring marquise diamond. Lastly, go for the color grade that best compliments the size of your diamond and your personal preference.

Your Marquise Diamond

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