Natural citrine is very rare since there are only a few places where it is found in the world. At our KLENOTA jewellery studio, citrines are among the most popular yellow stones and you can choose from a wide range - from light yellow to deep orange and brown citrines with a touch of red. Among the most popular are what are known as Madeira citrines, which shine with their golden orange to reddish brown colour.
At KLENOTA, we only use natural citrines from proven suppliers and their quality is also backed up with a Certificate of Authenticity which you will receive with every piece of KLENOTA jewellery. Each citrine is unique and we approach every stone with great care and attention. Before your jewellery is ready for you to take home, it has passed through the hands of several experts who guarantee an excellent result. If you are not sure about choosing the right citrine jewellery, our gemologist at the studio will be happy to advise you and show you how to take care of the stone.
Where do citrines come from?
In Europe, citrines are found in Russia, Spain and France. But if we don't want to venture as far as that, they can also be found on rare occasions in Moravia. Further afield, other known deposits are in Madagascar or Brazil.
Citrine was originally referred to as yellow quartz. It was given its name in 1556 by the German metallurgist Georg Bauer in his publication on gemstones and jewellery. The word probably comes from the French word for lemon or the Latin word citrus.
Even in ancient times, citrine was the star of show
In ancient times, citrines were believed to protect the wearer from evil thoughts and snake venom. In Egypt, they were worshiped as sunstones while in China, citrines were considered the stones of success - Chinese emperors wore them because they believed they would sharpen their minds. In Greece, they enjoyed popularity in the Hellenistic period and were mainly used as decorations.
But citrines weren’t just used in jewellery - for example there are handles of daggers and swords from 17th century Scotland decorated with citrines. Another Scottish specialty were citrine pins which were used to decorate kilts.
Citrine brooches have also been popular throughout history. Several such pieces have survived from the Victorian era. In these pieces, the citrine is often cut into an oval and is the star of the piece of jewellery.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the beauty of citrines was highlighted in the art deco period. Many movie stars of the time owned meticulously crafted citrine jewellery. Among them was Greta Garbo, who owned a citrine collection, liked to show off in it and as a result caused the sale of citrines to skyrocket at the time.
Citrine under a microscope
Like amethysts, quartz or smoky quartz, citrines are a variety of low quartz and are just as hard. They are rated seven out of ten on the Mohs scale of hardness. They crystalise in the hexagonal system, they do not cleave and have an uneven to conchoidal fracture and a white streak.
Their lustre is vitreous and they are usually transparent to translucent. Citrines are very stable, weather resistant stones, which is why they can sometimes be found during field harvests or in river alluviums. They crystallised from liquid in cavities which formed after lava solidified.
It has long been thought that iron is behind their beautiful yellow colour - the same metal that is responsible for the purple colour in amethysts. These days however there is another preferred theory which states that aluminum is responsible for the colour of some citrines. This idea is supported by the fact that iron always turns minerals orange and not yellow or yellow-green, as is the case with true natural citrines.
The properties of citrines: Positive energy, calm and prosperity
Citrines are considered stones of inner peace. They are said to hold enormous power, they have cleansing properties, dissipate negativity and have the power to store solar energy. In doing this, they can apparently rid their wearer of sadness, bring light to their life and strengthen their self-confidence and positive view of the world. They are apparently perfect for bankers, treasurers and merchants, because the stones attract wealth and prosperity. It is said too that the citrine is an ideal stone for athletes and fitness trainers however those with a choleric temperament or gossipers should be careful as citrines may cause aggression in them.
The various colour shades of citrines also have different properties. For example, light yellow crystals help with communication and are said to ensure a good start to a new relationship. Yellow citrine varieties help to keep relationships going and also encourage people to see things from another point of view. On the other hand, citrines with dark shades help their owners be more determined, persuasive and precise. Citrines with a golden colour are the domain of kings and are a symbol of wealth. They are said to be able to bring luck, strength, happiness, enthusiasm and success.
Along with the topaz, citrine is the birthstone of November. If you want to give it to someone as an anniversary present, it is generally held that it should be given for a 13th anniversary. It symbolises the beginning of summer, and therefore best suits people born during this period. Yellow shades of citrine are ideal for anyone born under the sign of cancer while leos best suit the golden coloured varieties.
Jewellery that you will admire citrines in
The citrine is a rare, fine and gentle stone. The darker shades of it where yellow turns from orange to brown, are especially valuable. Based on their colour, citrines can be divided into “yellow citrines”, “golden citrines”, the very popular and sought after “Madeira citrines” (which have a golden-orange to reddish brown colour and come from Brazil), “fire citrines”, which is the trade name for “deep orange citrines” that have a wonderful deep orange to brown colour with a hint of red in it, and “Palmeira citrines”, which are bright orange.
Citrines look best with traditional yellow gold, but they also look gorgeous when combined with white gold. The beauty of citrines can also be enhanced by another stone such as a diamond, next to which the citrine would light up beautifully.
Citrines can be cut into many shapes due to their hardness and good purity. In the KLENOTA jewellery collection, you can choose from traditional round or oval cuts as well as from jewellery with the gemstone cut into a teardrop. If you like square shapes then you will no doubt enjoy rings and pendants with citrines in emerald or cushion cuts. On the other hand, if you want to declare your love, then pendants and rings with a citrine in the shape of a heart are perfect.
Watch out for: Amethysts in disguise
You will often find stones with a particular orange colour on the market sold as “citrines”. In fact these are not citrines but amethysts that have been heated at high temperatures until their purple colour changed to orange.
And another trick exists which is all about the way that the citrine crystals have been cut and polished. Quartz and amethysts are repaired in a similar way. It’s relatively easy to recognize these types of crystals – they are perfect. The crystal surfaces are perfectly smooth and polished, the edges are not damaged in any way and on the contrary, they are perfectly sharp. Often, the crystal has also been shaped into an unnatural shape to make it more attractive, regardless of whether it would grow like this in nature.
Another stone which we might confuse citrine with is the lemon quartz. It is irradiated quartz which then takes on a similar colour to citrine as a result of this treatment.
How to take care of citrine jewellery
Like amethysts, citrines also shouldn’t be exposed to sunlight for extended periods as they may fade over time. Otherwise, you don't need to worry too much about them. They do not cleave so they are not as easily damaged as emeralds or topaz.
Interesting facts about citrines: The enchanting ametrine
In nature, citrines have at times fused with amethysts to create dual colour gemstones in a yellow-violet colour. We call these stones ametrines. If you are a lover of both of these colours and you can’t decide whether to choose a citrine or an amethyst, then this is a rare opportunity to have them both in one unique gemstone.
By the way, did you know that the largest citrine in the world weighs a respectable 20,200 carats and is 7.87 x 5.90 x 3.93 inches large? It's called Malaga and comes from Brazil where it was mined in 1990 (however it was not faceted until 19 years later). In addition to its beautiful colour which is like that of the sun, the Malaga also excels in its exceptional purity and transparency.