Archives for gemstones

Carnelian, the orange gemstone

Carnelian (also called cornelian) is a form of chalcedony that takes on various shades of orange or red, from brownish-red to orange-pink. It is always an opaque stone, sometimes with slight translucency, and occurs as masses. Being a member of the chalcedony family, carnelian is considered a form of quartz with a hardness of 7, and its orange color is derived from iron oxides. A lot of carnelian you see today has had artificial dye applied to enhance their coloring. It was highly popular in past ancient civilizations and often used in amulets, heirlooms, or jewelry (as engraved or carved
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Diamonds – King of the Gemstones

Diamonds are rightfully hailed as the king of the gemstones. Being the hardest material on earth, they represent the limit of the Mohs scale at 10. Diamonds are carbon, but with a different molecular arrangement, called allotropy. This slight difference in the molecule arrangement makes all the difference in the properties of diamond. There is no natural material that can scratch a diamond, so diamonds are used in many industrial tools as cutting materials. Rarely, impurities or defects in the molecular structure can alter a diamond’s color, turning them into black, blue, green, yellow, purple, orange, pink or red. These
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Spinel and its properties

Spinel (MgAl2O4) is a gemstone that has often been mistaken for ruby. Due to its hardness of 8 on the Mohs scale, spinel is only a shade less hard than ruby, which is 9. Its specific gravity is also similar to ruby. Many famous “rubies” in history were actually spinels. It crystallizes as octahedrons which may appear as twin crystals embedded in rock or deposited as pebbles in gravel (in Myanmar). This mineral is in fact rarer than ruby now; at one time it was plentiful in India. Now, the main deposits are concentrated in Myanmar, Tajikistan, and Sri Lanka.
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The metaphysical properties of ametrine

Ametrine is a mix of both amethyst and citrine, and can be either natural, or artificially manufactured through heat treatment. Virtually all naturally occurring ametrine is found in Bolivia, hence it is sometimes known as bolivianite. It occurs in either typical quartz crystal form, or in massive form. The colors of both purple and yellow/orange are distinctly separated in their individual zones within ametrine; the difference is due to the iron ions within experiencing different zones of radiation exposure during the formative process. Possessing both the qualities of ametrine and citrine, ametrine is a useful and beautiful stone to have
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The exclusive Tanzanite

Tanzanite is the name given to the blue or purple variety of zoisite found only in Tanzania. Zoisite is a mineral of above average hardness, about 6.5 on the Mohs scale, and appears in a range of colors, such as blue, green, brown, pink, and colorless. In Tanzania, tanzanite is mined in the Merelani Hills. The rarity and exclusiveness of tanzanite might seem like an exaggeration, but only Tanzania produces blue zoisite of such quality. Now, it must be remembered that any blue or purple colored zoisite could be called tanzanite, although it may never have originated from Tanzania, just
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