Little did I know when I went in to work this morning that I would stumble upon a website that does something both macabre and fascinating: Life Gems
What is a LifeGem®?
The LifeGem® is a certified, high-quality diamond created from the
carbon of your loved one as a memorial to their unique life, or as a symbol of your personal and precious bond with another.
You read that correctly: Cremate a dead loved one and they'll compress the carbon into a diamond. Frankly, I think they're underreaching. Off the cuff I can imagine a powerful market for these death diamonds in one key area: prestige auctions.
Imagine the market for diamonds made from historical figures. Who wants to bid on an original Monét when you can bid on the actual Monét (in diamond form)? As long as you have a clever grave-robbing team you can make millions as you tick off lists of historical figures.
Update: thanks to some detective work by Erin, I've been told that LifeGem is in fact already creating diamons from historical figures.