The sapphire belongs to the so-called "big three" colored gems, along with the ruby and emerald. The most valued color of sapphires is blue-green.
The sapphire is a variety of corundum minerals. It is the second hardest mineral, and its crystals most often have a spherical or spindle shape. Chemically, this is alumina stained with other ingredients in a variety of colors.
Sapphires occur in all possible color shades, except red. The most prized color is the bright blue color that dazzles in all kinds of light. Other colors that are very popular are yellow, pink and salmon-colored sapphires.
Main color: blue
Other colors: all possible colors except ruby red - yellow, orange, green, pink, salmon (padparadha), purple, black and colorless (leucosapphire)
9 - the second hardest gemstone
Brazil, Australia, Colombia, India, Cambodia, Nigeria, Russia, Kenya
More about the sapphire color
There are sapphires in highly prized salmon or antique shades. Their color is somewhere between pink and orange, most often compared to lotus flowers.
The best sapphires are called Kashmiri; they come in a rich, velvety cornflower blue. These Kashmir sapphires are mined in India, Madagascar, Srí Lanka, and Pakistan. The price for Kashmir sapphires is very high, around 140,000 pounds per carat!
Did you know that...?
The sapphire is the precious gemstone of the zodiac sign Libra.
The sapphire is the birthstone of the month of September.
The sapphire wedding is the 45th wedding anniversary.
The sapphire is a symbol of wisdom and suppresses negative thoughts. It has soothing effects, supports patience, harmonizes and suppresses negative tension in the body. The sapphire is also a protector of true love and fidelity.
According to old myths and legends, heaven is a huge sapphire that Earth resides in.
In Buddhism, the sapphire was considered a stone that calms thoughts and helps in meditation. The Indians believed that anyone wearing this gem would be protected against the diseases and dangers of insect bites. In Antic, it was recommended to wear sapphire as an amulet against chills and to increase potency.
The healing effects of sapphire
Strengthens the eyes
Stops frequent nosebleeds
Boosts blood vessels and increases their flexibility
Balances thyroid glands
Regulates activity of the glands
Reduces high blood pressure
Works against excessive sweating.
THE MOST SUCCESSFUL SAPPHIRES
Sapphires on Czech crown jewels
Czech Coronation Cross
The Coronation Cross, or the Golden Reindeer Cross, together with the crown, apple and scepter are part of the ensemble of Czech Coronation Jewels. It is a cross-shaped box wherein the most precious relics of the Czech kingdom were stored.
The coronation cross contains 6 large gems, the most interesting of which is the sapphire at the head. This sapphire is blue in the daylight but violet in other light - this property is called "weak color". The weight of the sapphire can not be estimated, but it is one of the largest engraved historical sapphires in the world.
St. Wenceslas crown
The St. Wenceslas crown or St. Wenceslas' Crown is the oldest and most important part of the ensemble of Czech Coronation Jewels. It is consecrated to St. Wenceslas and is preserved with the crown jewel and apple in the St. Wenceslas Chapel of St. Vitus, Wenceslas and Vojtech Cathedral in Prague.
The crown is 21-22 karat gold, 1 mm thick. It weighs 2.358 kg and has 96 gems. It is decorated with one of the largest sapphires in the world, a ruby, an emerald and 20 pearls. The gems are mostly larger in size and fastened with golden claws. The color arrangement has a symbolic meaning - the red stones are featured on the front and back, with the blue stones on the sides.
The largest natural sapphire
The largest natural sapphire was found in Sri Lanka in January 2016. It is a so-called "asteric" sapphire, which provides an interesting optical effect - if properly polished, there is a moving six-pointed star.
Weight: 1404.49 carats
Price: $ 175 million
The largest cut sapphires
Star of India
The largest cut sapphire in the world, called the Star of India, was discovered in Sri Lanka. The Star of India is an opaque asterisk stone. This gorgeous sapphire was donated by the financial mogul J.P. Morgan to the American Museum of Natural History in New York, where it is exposed today.
Weight: 563 carats
The second largest sapphire in the world is Logan. It was discovered in Sri Lanka and received its name after Mrs. John A. Logan, who gave it to the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Washington in 1960. The jewel is set in a beautiful brooch and is surrounded by 20 diamonds with a total weight of 16 carats.
Weight: 422.99 carats
Famous jewelry with sapphires
Sapphire Entrance Ring of British Duchess Kate
The most famous ring featuring a sapphire is undoubtedly the ring of the British royal family, which Duchess Kate (rightly Catherine) now wears. This is an 18 kt gold ring with a dark-colored oval sapphire surrounded by 14 smaller diamonds.
The ring was made by the British jewellery company Garrard, which is the court jeweller of the royal family. Before Kate, it was Princess Diana’s engagement ring. Prince Charles gave it to her in 1981, and for the English, the ring was a big shock - he broke all the existing traditions - in particular that the engagement ring should be a diamond. After the whole world saw this unique sapphire ring, the demand for these blue stones rose considerably. All the women wanted rings just like Lady Di! The increased demand for sapphires was reflected in the price of this wedding ring - in 1981 it cost around 45,000 pounds, and nowadays, thanks to the high prices of sapphires and gold, it costs about 70,000 pounds.
Bismarck's Necklace (Bismarck Sapphire)
The necklace was designed and produced by Cartier and received by Countess Mona von Bismarck in 1930 from her affiliated husband. The 1967 necklace was dedicated to the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Washington and was eponymously named Bismarck's sapphire necklace. The necklace is made of a beautiful 98.6 carat sapphire that is surrounded by diamonds and smaller sapphires.
Hall Sapphire and Diamond Necklace
The necklace was designed and created by Harry Winston, an important American jewellery company. The necklace contains 36 sapphires with a total weight of 195 carats, surrounded by 435 diamonds with a total weight of 83.75 carats.
Korunovacni-klenoty.cz. (2016). About the Gems of the St. Wenceslas Crown - Czech crown jewels. [Online] Available at: http://www.korunovacni-klenoty.cz/en/jine/o-drahokamech-svatovaclavske-koruny.html [Access 10.11.2016].
Gemselect.com. (2016). Bismarck Sapphire Necklace. [Online] Available at: http://www.gemselect.com/other-info/bismarck-sapphire-necklace.php [Access 10.11.2016].