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About Beads: Culture & HistoryFun Facts

Carrots, Carats and Karats!

By June 1, 2018 No Comments

Did you know….. A carat — not carrot — is a unit used to measure the weight of a precious stone. “Carat” is derived from “carob.” The carob tree produces seeds that are uniquely uniform in size and weight, which made it useful for olden-time traders when weighing gemstones on scales. One carat is equal to 0.2 gram and five carats equals 1 gram.

And while a carat was used to measure precious stones such as diamond, ruby, sapphire, emerald-  today it is commonly used in sales of semi-precious stones as well (for an example of  a semi-precious stone, see the beautiful rhodolite garnet pictured above).

This is different from a karat, which is a measure of the purity of gold.

Carats measure stones, Karats measure gold.

  • 24k gold is also called pure gold or 100 per cent gold. This means that all 24 parts in the gold are all pure gold without traces of any other metals. It is known to be 99.9 per cent pure and takes on a distinct bright yellow color. There is no higher form of gold than 24K and you must be aware of this before you go to a dealer who might tell you that they’re selling you 25K or 26K gold.
  • MORE about gold from the Gold Purity Guide here!

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