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Got a good reason For taking the easy way out


Since hubby and I saw The Blood Diamond movie, and watched a special about the slave issue that remains today with diamond mines in Africa, I've been thinking about just what makes the gemstones their color? Ya, I pro'lly missed that class playing hookie or out sick in school!!!!

For instance what compound makes a sapphire blue? A topaz golden? Or a ruby red?

For emeralds, my favorite precious stone, the coloring is attributable to chromium. It is a medium or darker green to blue green beryl, in which the green color is derived from impurities of Chromium, Vanadium. Its chemical composition is a combination of beryllium aluminum silicate and it appears colorless in its pure state. Other beryl, like aquarium, morganite, heliodor, and pale green beryl grow in pegmatite which allows larger crystals to form. (from: Emeralds)
And the compounds needed/extracted from gemstones is as follows:
RUBY-Color-red, host crystal-aluminum oxide, impurity-Chromium
EMERALD-Color-green, host crystal-Beryllium aluminosilicate, impurity-Chromium
GARNET-Color-blood red, host crystal-Calcium aluminosilicate, impurity-iron
TOPAZ-Color-yellow, host crystal-Calcium lithium boroaluminosilicate, impurity-Manganese

The BLUE of a sapphire is derived from: The intense blue of the sapphire comes from adding to corundum two impurities (titanium and iron) and the blue color is produced in a slightly different way, by a process known as charge transfer.

The Amethyst's PURPLE(my birthstone) is composed this way: Amethyst is a violet tinted gemstone consisting of crystalline quartz with iron as an added impurity. The iron impurity in amethyst acts differently from the chromium impurity in ruby.

And confirming thoughts with statistics and science, I read that Ruby and sapphire are among the most brilliant gemstones because corundum is the hardest crystal, second only to diamond.

But funny thing is, I'd prefer emeralds since they're green to my own birthstone, tho I like purple also. Funny what human nature is and how it takes its own course.

So, blog, now you know. Inquiring minds are just probably reveling all over blogland right now knowing that you and I taught them something.

Either that or we've chased 'em outta here because of pure unadulterated boredom!!!


  1. Ahhhhhh... but SOME of these stones come in many different colors. Sapphires for one -- blue is what we consider the "normal" color -- but they can actually be found in every color of the rainbow! Garnets I think also come in MANY colors -- ... so now MY question is ... if you have two RED stones side by side -- what makes ONE of them a Ruby and the other one a Sapphire? Hmmmm...?

  2. Interesting, I learned something today! I'm an Amethyst myself!