Ever wonder what that K next to the number on your gold jewelry is symbolic of?
Well your not alone because I used to wonder what the heck it was as well. After doing some digging around, actually not that much since we have this wonderful thing called the internet, I found my answer. This special K is the universal acronym in jewelry lingo for Karat (K) or otherwise know as carat(ct.) for our friends in the UK and Persian Gulf Region. This Karat system is used to inform the jeweler and any would be purchasers of how many parts of gold there is in that particular item.
The origin of the term comes from the Roman Emperor Constantine who during his time decided to mint some 24K gold coins during 309 CE. Im sure during that period the Emperor did this not just because he didn’t want to walk around with gold bars in his pockets, he was the ruler of the land after all.
Below are some ratios of Karat to gold percentages for some clarification:
- 24 karat (24K) gold is pure gold making it 100%.
- 18 karat (18K) gold contains 18 parts gold and 6 parts another metal or metals, making it 75% gold.
- 14 karat (14K) gold contains 14 parts gold and 10 parts another metal or metals, making it 58.3% gold.
- 10 karat (10K) gold contains 10 parts gold and 14 parts another metal or metals, making it 41.7% gold. 10k gold is the minimum karat designation that can still be called gold in the US.
With this knowledge of Karat, hopefully you’ll be more informed in what your buying or investing in, after all jewelry is an investment. No matter how small of a purchase.
Live, Life, Lamour