It is said that King Louis XV wanted a diamond cut to mirror the shape of his mistress’s mouth, the Marchioness, or Marquise, of Pompadour. He commissioned his jeweler to create one and the marquise diamond cut was born. It is shaped like a long oval with points on either end. Though the oval diamond cut has increased in popularity, the marquise diamond cut can still be seen on engagement rings of celebrities such as Traci Bingham and Catherine Zeta Jones.
A piece of marquise cut diamond jewelry also requires a six prong set: two at the corners of the diamond to protect them, as well as four prongs on the body of the jewelry. The marquise diamond cut is popular as being the center of settings, surrounded by other smaller diamonds or precious stones.
The marquise diamond cut is prone to the bow-tie effect, as are other fancy diamond cuts. To avoid the bow-tie effect, the diamond should be analyzed from all angles and the buyer should seek a diamond cut with a depth of less than 60%. Additionally, more facets can be added to the crown to resolve this problem. It should contain about 56 facets: 33 on the crown and 25 on the pavilion. The girdle of a marquise diamond cut is also important. Too little means there will not be as much durability for the diamond jewelry and too much means it will be difficult to set and will hide weight. The marquise diamond cut is a fancy cut, made to maximize the carat weight.
A marquise diamond cut should not be too long or too short. If it is too long, the light will not be reflected as brilliantly. The culet should also be elongated through the entire diamond on the jewelry. This elongated shape also gives the appearance of the diamond being bigger on the jewelry than it actually is. The ideal ratio of a marquise diamond cut is 2:1.