Origin of Name: Greek «σαπφειρος»
Meaning of the Stone: September birthstone
Family: Oxide Mineral
Region: Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Canada, Brazil, (Tanzania is the main deposit for color-change sapphire)
Color: Varieties of blue, purple, blue-purple, pink-orange
Transparency: transparent to translucent, opaque
Fracture: conchoidal, uneven
Hardness (Gravity): 9 (3.99-4.10)
Crystal System: Trigonal
Similar Minerals: Tourmaline, Topaz, Zircon, Tanzanite
1. Legend and History:
The remarkable beauty and amazing properties of sapphire have intrigued people from the beginning of historical times; In the past the majority of blue precious and semi precious stones were named sapphires. It was not until the 19th century when sapphires and rubies were recognized as varieties of corundum. In Medieval times sapphire was said to reflect the sky and the highest of spiritual values.
Sapphire is considered to be a symbol of wealth and prestige, and is said to relieve it’s wearer from pain, protect from evil, as well as bring power, honor and immortality to its wearer.
2. Origin in nature and use:
Color change sapphire is considered to be a highly rare variety of sapphire, as it has the ability to exhibit different colors in different light, thus being blue when outdoors and purple when in indoor light, but also pink and green.
Not all stones exhibit the same change in color; others change fully while others only partially, like for example a change from blue to bluish purple.
Although color change sapphire deposits are found in many regions, the main location for high quality gemstones is in Tanzania.
3. Interesting Facts:
Given the remarkable hardness that the sapphire stone exhibits, it is not only used in jewelry making; Sapphire crystal is used for most watches as it does not break easily and is fairly scratchproof. In addition, some high quality windows are made of sapphire.
4. Care and Storing:
Sapphire should be protected from high temperatures as it may lose its color and beauty. Cleaning sapphire has no true limitations and any method may be preferred, caution must be taken however when the crystal has inclusions.