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When we get the blues, we’re not singing “The Thrill is Gone” – we’re dreaming in blue. (When we get the blue sapphires for September, that is) That’s when we find ourselves dreaming a rich blue silky texture that goes on forever and ever, as if peering into outer-space.
Perrywinkle sapphires bear a vibrant full-bodied color, starting in the one-hundred dollar range. We love getting the blues, from mines in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Madagascar — not those dark ink-like ones from Australia.
So get the blues in your life. Then instead of singing the “The Thrill is Gone” you’ll be singing, “The Thrill is On.
The sky is just a gigantic blue Sapphire stone into which the earth is embedded – this belief was cherished in ancient times. And, in fact, does there exist a better image to describe the beauty of an immaculate Sapphire of purest blue? This gemstone exists in all the shades of blue skies, from the deep blue of evening skies to the bright and deep blue of a clear and beautiful summer sky. This splendid gemstone, however, also comes in many other colors, not only in the transparent grayish- misty blue of far off horizons, but also displaying the bright fireworks of sunset colors – yellow, pink, orange, green and in purple. And at Perrywinkle’s we carry every color of the sapphire rainbow with prices starting in the hundred dollar range.
Top-Sapphires are rare!
Sapphires, these gemstones of the skies, rest hidden away in only few places of the earth and have to be brought to daylight in laborious procedures. Sapphires are found in India, Burma, Ceylon, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Brazil and Africa. From the gemstone mines the rough crystals are supplied to the cutters, where skilled hands turn the rough into sparkling gemstones. A cutter must draw on all his experience and deftness when cutting sapphire, because these gemstones are not only hard, they also display a different coloring and satiation depending on the perspective. Therefore, then, the cutter must align the orientation of the stone in such a way as to bring about the best possible display of color.
Depending on the place of occurrence the depth of color as well as the shade displayed by the cut stones will vary, which in turn offers a wider range to select from. So shall a woman who has decided on a sapphire go for the medium blue stone evoking the summer skies even on a rainy day? Alternatively, should she rather prefer a lighter blue, because it sparkles brilliantly also in the evening? Bright daylight makes most Sapphires shine more vividly than the somewhat muted artificial light. Therefore, the most highly cherished color for blue sapphires is not the darkest blue as is often claimed, but a deep and satiated blue, which even in dim artificial light remains to appear blue.
The oldest Sapphire mines are situated in Ceylon, today called Sri Lanka, where gemstones were mined in ancient times. The expert recognizes Ceylon sapphires from the luminosity and brilliance of their light to medium blue color. Most blue Sapphires, however, come from Thailand or Australia.
Their value depends on size, color and transparency. For very fine qualities, these criteria are supplemented by information on the origin of the gemstone. The color as such is not necessarily linked to the geographic origin of the Sapphire, and this explains why there are such enormous price differences between the respective qualities. The most valuable sapphires are real Kashmir stones. Almost as highly cherished are stones from Burma, followed by Ceylon-Sapphires. Another factor reflecting on the price for a sapphire is a possible treatment, as in our age of gemstone cosmetics a stone, which has definitely not been treated, becomes more and more desirable. In addition, if this rare beauty should be a real Kashmir- or Burma-Sapphire with a certificate to document this, than you will definitely have to pay a collector’s price.
Sapphire belongs to the corundum group, which is set apart from other gemstones by their very good hardness (Grade 9 on the Mohs’ scale). They are second in hardness to diamonds only, and diamonds represent the hardest mineral on Earth! Because of their good harness, sapphires are easy to care for as gemstones and demand from their wearers only the usual and normal care.
The corundum group consists of pure aluminum oxide, which a long time ago was caused to crystallize into beautiful and splendid gemstones by the pressure and heat in the depths of the ground. Small proportions of other elements, mainly iron and chrome, are responsible for the resulting colors and make the white crystals a blue, red, yellow, pink or greenish Sapphire. However, this does not necessarily imply that any corundum is a sapphire. Which stone may be termed a Sapphire – this is a question, which for centuries has fueled heated discussions among experts. Finally, agreement was achieved to call ruby-red Sapphires “Rubies”, and all other colors “Sapphires”.
The most renowned sources for Sapphires are Myanmar and Kashmir, where Sapphires was discovered in 1881 when a land – slide in the Himalayas uncovered beautiful blue pebbles.
Sapphires are found in India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Brazil, Africa and China. Today most fine Sapphires on the market comes from Thailand, which is one of the world’s most important ruby and sapphires trading center.
HISTORY AND LORE
Throughout the world, Sapphire has been traditionally associated with royalty, worn by kings to protect them from harm. The ancient Persians believed that the earth rested on a giant Sapphire whose reflection gave the sky its color. Legend has it that if a poisonous snake were put into a vessel along with a Sapphire, the rays from the gem would kill it. Our ancestors interpreted this to mean that Sapphire was an antidote against poison.
Ancient priests and sorcerers honored sapphire for it was said to enable them to foretell the future. Because Sapphire represents divine favor, it was the gemstone of choice for kings and high priests. Tradition holds that Moses was given the Ten Commandments on tablets of Sapphire, making it the most sacred gemstone. Sapphire has long symbolized truth, sincerity and consistency. Sapphire engagement rings are given to express commitment and loyalty of their heart. Prince Charles chose a blue Sapphire for Princess Diana’s engagement ring.
Medieval priests in Europe would wear Sapphire jewelry believing it had the ability to quell wicked impulses and impure thoughts. Sapphire was lethal to venomous insects and reptiles. Sapphires were believed to have gender: dark stones were designated female, light ones were male. Sapphire is thought to make its wearers amiable, wise, virtuous, and strong. The stone preserved the wearer from envy and attracted divine favor Egyptians associated the clear Sapphire with the eye of Horas, Greeks identified the white Sapphire with Apollo and was used by the oracles at Delphi.
Crystal system: Hexagonal (trigonal) long prisms.
India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Brazil, Australia
Refractive Index: 1.76 to 1.78 (This is the angle that light bends as it passes from the surface into the gemstone)
Hardness: 9 (Moh’s Scale) A hard stone, but subject to care because of internal liquid filled inclusions and fractures.
Specific Gravity: 2.72 (The number of times heavier than water)
Optic Character: Double Refraction.
Phenomena: Chatoyancy (Very rare)
Heat: Generally safe.