Your eyes glisten at the thought of precious stones aka gemstones, isn’t it? Gemstones have played a variety of roles in the myths and tales of human societies throughout history. Although some precious stones are believed to have unique powers, each shares a typical grandeur, distinct with a unique colour, birthplace, and story. Gems come in every colour of the rainbow spectrum and are gathered from all corners of the globe. Diamonds, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds are ‘the’ four of the most valuable and sought-after treasured gemstones in the world. There are various other gemstones too which possess a one-of-a-kind colour and composition. This article discusses the beauty and finesse along with the list of precious stones, chemical compositions and colours.
List of Precious stones and colours
Around 200 minerals are classified into the gemstone category. Any mineral that is durable, looks good and is rare is considered a gemstone. Other than the four precious stones we’ve listed down a few more gemstones under the precious and semi-precious classes. Let’s take a look at the list of precious stones-these stunning beauties.
- Lapiz Lazuli
- Paraiba Tourmaline
The list of precious stones minerals along with their chemical composition and colours are tabulated below.
|Gypsum||CaSO4||Colourless (in transmitted light) to white; often tinged other hues due to impurities; maybe yellow, tan, blue, pink, dark brown, reddish-brown or grey|
|Calcite||CaCO 3||Colourless or white in pure form, but could be of almost any colour—reddish, pink, yellow, greenish, bluish, lavender, black, or brown.|
|Fluorite||CaF 2||colourless, various shades of purple, various shades of green, blue-green, blue, yellow to orange, various shades of brown, white, pink, red, brownish red, pinkish red, brownish-black, black.|
|Apatite||3 Ca 3 (PO 4 ) 2 •CaF 2||Colourless, Various shades of the following colours-green, white, blue, brown, yellow, purple, violet, grey, pink.|
|Feldspar||K 2 Al 2 Si 6 O 16||Shades of white, grey, pink and dark grey|
|Quartz||SiO 2||Colourless through various colours and black|
|Topaz||Al 2 SiO 4 F 2||Colourless, yellow, orange, brown, red, blue, pink, violet and green.|
|Corundum||Al 2 O 3||Colourless, grey, golden-brown, brown, purple, pink to red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet and sometimes colour zoned, mainly grey and brown asteriated|
|Diamond||C||Pure diamonds are transparent and colourless. Coloured diamonds belong to the natural rainbow spectrum of colours—red, orange, yellow, blue, pink, green, purple, and more.|
Diamonds were and still are objects of desire. Known for their brilliance and highest shine of all gemstones, diamonds are the hardest treasure in the world, one that can only be scratched with another diamond.
Diamonds are graded on a system of 4C’s- Carat weight, Colour, Cut and Clarity. The diamonds are transparent, shiny and colourless usually, but they do exhibit colour, for example, like the Hope diamond which is blue.
For over centuries, Amethyst has been related to a collection of myths, tales, and religious beliefs in many cultures. Amethyst belongs to the quartz family and it possesses a beautiful violet colour. It is categorized under the silicate mineral with the formula SiO2. The Amethyst is as hard as quartz and so is best used in jewellery.
The beautiful name Amethyst is derived from the Greek word Amethystos. Amethystos means “not drunk”. People believed you could drink all night and still remain sober if you had an amethyst in your mouth or on your person.
Aquamarine represents itself, indicating seawater. Aquamarine possesses amazing pastel sky blue colour or the bright colour of the sea. It belongs to the cyan or blue variety of the beryl family.
For centuries, this timeless precious stone has been an icon of youth, integrity, wellness, and hope. Given that this stone is the colour of skies and water, it symbolizes immortality. Aquamarine is derived from the Latin word aqua marina which means seawater.
Citrine is a bright, radiating gemstone, that belongs to a special variety of quartz, that has been regarded as a gift from sunlight. The name Citrine is derived from the Latin word Citrina which means yellow which is fitting with its colour range of different shades of yellow- succulent lemon yellow to a brilliant orangeish brown. Some of the most in-demand Citrine gemstones have a glowing, clear yellow-coloured to brownish red colour.
In ancient times, Citrine was thought of as security against snake venom and evil thoughts. Citrine is nowadays one of the most affordable and popular gems.
A cyclosilicate, Emerald is a green colour gemstone which is a variety of the beryl mineral.
Emerald was considered the gem of Venus and known to assist fertility. Cleopatra, Egypt’s frenetic woman monarch, was renowned for wearing Emerald Jewellery. In the olden times, Egyptian mummies were time and again buried with an Emerald carved with the icon – thriving greenness – on their necks to mark eternal youth.
An ornamental mineral, Jade is widely known for its green varieties, although it is naturally available in colours like white, yellow, pink. In China, it has been treasured as a royal gem for years.
People believed Jade has the potential power to maintain body after death, and hence it was found in the tombs of Emperors who were buried decades ago.
Garnets are gemstones that have been used since the Bronze age, which belongs to the silicate group. The chemical formula of Garnet is X3Y2(SiO4)3.
It is the birthstone of January. Legend says that Garnets illuminate the evening and protect their owners from problems. Hence, tourists and travelers have long brought garnets to protect and safeguard against accidents far from their residences.
Lapis Lazuli is a deep blue metamorphic rock, that has been prized since antiquity owing to its intense colour.
LapisLazuli was exported to Europe by the end of the Middle Ages, where it was ground into a fine powder and made into ultramarine.
Lapis Lazuli means blue stone which was also thought to be a powerful medication. The Romans believed this gem to be a strong aphrodisiac as it was thought to keep the arms or legs free and purify the heart from envy, fear, and mistakes.
Ruby is a variety of the mineral corundum which has a colour that ranges from pink to blood-red. Moreover, Ruby has its place among the traditional cardinal gems, one of the most precious stones. Its formula is Al2O3:Cr
The king of all gems, Ruby has been the treasured possession of kings and Emperors all across the world. However, It was believed that wearing a fine red Ruby brought good fortune on its possessor.
Sapphires are the third hardest mineral in the Mohs scale. Known for their beautiful blue colour, they are also available in virtually every rainbow colour in the shades of pink, yellow, orange, peach, and violet.
The most prized Sapphires come from Myanmar (Burma), Kashmir, and Sri Lanka. Sapphires were believed to guarantee sincerity, purity, commitment and dependability.
Possessing colours of yellow, brown, honey, green, blue, red, pink, and in some cases colourless, Topaz has a mass appeal. Topaz is a silicate mineral with Aluminium and Fluorine as its components. Its chemical formula is Al2SiO4(F, OH)2. Topaz is usually found in an amber gold, yellow, or a bright pink-orange; however, a light pink or a sherry red Topaz is extravagant. One of the most valued colours of Topaz is the Imperial Topaz, featuring a stunning orange with pink touches. Topaz with blue as its natural colour is extremely rare.
The ancient Romans and Egyptians associated this gold gem with the sun god, offering it the strength to recover and protect, enabling it to annihilate enchantment.
Turquoise is one of the earliest recognized gemstones. having graced Egyptian Pharaohs’ necks and decorated very early Native Americans’ ceremonial dress, its popularity has spanned the globe for centuries. This gorgeous robin’s egg blue gemstone was believed to have healing powers, promoting the owner’s standing and wide range, protecting from wickedness, and also bringing good fortune.
The word turquoise dates to the 17th century and is derived from the French word turquois which means”Turkish” as the mineral was first brought to Europe through Turkey from mines of Iran (Persia)Turquoise is an opaque, light to dark blue or blue-green gemstone whose finest colour is an intense blue. Recognized as the matrix, these layers of colour are sometimes in the form of a detailed design called a spider web.
These are just some of the facts about a few of the precious stones. There are still more out there that will mesmerize you with their beauty and grandeur. We hope this article on the list of precious stones were informative and helpful for you.
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