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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) / Gems With the Most Brilliance and Fire

Which Gemstones Have the Most Brilliance and Fire?

Zircon Brillance and Fire

Brilliance refers to light that is reflected back to the eye, while 'fire' refers to the tendency of a gemstone to split light into its spectral colors (gemologically is referred to as 'dispersion'). Among the well-known gemstones, those with the greatest brilliance and fire include diamond, zircon, sphene, sphalerite, demantoid garnet, spessartite garnet, sapphire and tanzanite.

As a general rule, gemstones with lighter colors will exhibit more brilliance and fire (dispersion) than those with darker colors. Gemstones that have been given diamond-cuts will also exhibit more brilliance than those given traditional step-cut facets. For more detailed rankings, see our refractive index chart for brilliance, and our dispersion chart for fire. For more information on this subject, please refer to article on gemstone brilliance, luster and fire.

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  • First Published: February-20-2006
  • Last Updated: August-09-2017
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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

Size Comparison Chart