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Photo by Robert Weldon/GIA; courtesy of Gem Diamonds Ltd.
The Letšeng-la-Terae diamond mine in Lesotho, a small nation surrounded by South Africa, is unique in that it produces some of the world’s largest and highest-value diamonds from a relatively small volume of kimberlite ore.
The standard approach to looking at fossils in the geological column is to assume that lower is older.
Since the geologic column represents millions of years of Earth's history, then obviously the fossils in each of the layers must be the same age as the layer in which they are found.
The key features of the International System are decimalization, a system of prefixes, and a standard defined in terms of an invariable physical measure.
The International System has base units from which all others in the system are derived.
Shown here are two rough stones: a 299.35 ct slightly yellowish partial octahedron and a colorless 112.61 ct type IIa diamond.
In recent years, several important diamonds recovered from Letšeng have been sold to London luxury jeweler Laurence Graff.
While the Premier (now Cullinan) mine in South Africa is usually cited as the traditional source for very rare large diamonds, in recent years the Letšeng-la-Terae mine in Lesotho has become the major producer of such stones (figure 1).
Many of the layers also show a certain specialization.
Some layers contain mostly fish fossils while others contain land-dwelling creatures such as dinosaurs.