If there is talk of the sapphire, most gemstone aficionados think immediately of a velvety blue. It’s a versatile colour that becomes many wearers. However, the beloved royal blue is only one of a rainbow of colors in the family of sapphire gems. Composed of corundum, a mineral second only to diamond in hardness, the sapphire is actually defined as any color of the mineral besides red. Red, is, of course, reserved for ruby.
As for the sapphire’s distinguished blue, defining the perfect hue is almost an art. Many regard the Kashmir as the most prized; Typical of the Kashmir colour is a pure, intense blue with a very subtle violet undertone, which is intensified yet more by a fine, silky shine. Others are enamored with sapphires from Ceylon (Sri Lanka), the oldest source for the gem, with its saturated royal hues and intense, fiery blue flashes. That being said, most blue sapphires come from either Australia or Thailand.
A sapphire’s value depends on its size, color and transparency. With stones of very fine quality, these are, however, not the only main criteria; the origin of the gem also plays a major role. The most valuable are genuine Kashmir stones, with Burmese sapphires valued almost as highly; then come the sapphires from Ceylon. Treatments like heating are also a factor in determining the price, since gemstones which can be guaranteed untreated are becoming more and more sought after.
|Dimensions||11.45 × 9.67 × 5.36 mm|