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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) / Meaning of Cabochon

What does "cabochon" mean?

In the gemstone world, a cabochon is a stone that is cut with a highly polished rounded or convex top with no faceting, with a flat or slightly domed base. A cabochon may be cut in any shape, though oval is by far the most common. The term comes from the French caboche, meaning knob or small dome. Certain stones are almost always cut "en cabochon", including opal, turquoise, onyx, moonstone, and star gemstones. In the gemstone world you will often hear the term cabochon shortened to "cab".

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  • First Published: February-20-2006
  • Last Updated: November-10-2014
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Size and Weight

Gems are always measured in Millimeter (mm)

Dimensions are given as;
length x width x depth,
except for round stones which are;
diameter x depth

Select gems by size, not by weight!
Gem varieties vary in density, so carat weight is not a good indication of size

Note: 1ct = 0.2g

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