Semi-Precious Gemstones - More Characteristics And History

by Eric Hartwell - Date: 2007-03-30 - Word Count: 555 Share This!

More Semi Precious Gemstones

Tourmaline - Singhalese word "turmali," meaning"mixed."

Description- a brittle black or grey mineral occurring in prismatic crystals within granite or other rocks. This stone occurs in all colors and many times in combinations, bicolor and tricolor tourmaline stones are favored, sometimes coloring occurs in bands, sometimes coloring takes on one shade with another in the center. 'Watermelon tourmaline' is pink in the middle with green surrounding it.

Characteristics of the Gem- 7.5 hardness in Moh's scale. Also used in optical instruments and electrical instruments due to its pyroelectric and polarizing properties because of the boron aluminosilicate making up its trigonal crystal structures.

It becomes magnetic and attracts light objects.

Holistic Properties- a very new age association with a protective impact. It is said to heal mental disorders and enables the wearer to face and tackle difficult challenges and changes.

Sourcing- pink and red tourmaline is found in Russia and Madagascar, Us, Burma, East Africa and Brazil.

History- The widowed last Empress of China, Tz'u Hsi was extremely fond of pink tourmaline and purchased a ton of the gemstone from a Himalayan mine. Upon her death, she was laid to rest on a pillow of carved pink tourmaline.


Description- Amber is translucent fossilized tree resin from extinct conifers of the Tertiary period. These typically yellow stones may also come in shades of golden orange, green, violet, red and black. Sometimes containing the bodies of trapped insects, found along the southern shores of the Baltic Sea. When this gemstone is rubbed, it gives off static electricity. The word electric comes from the Greek word for amber.

Characteristics of the Gem- this gemstone is very soft with a 2.5 on Moh's scale.

Holistic Properties- said to have powers to balance energy and facilitate cleansing. It assists the wearer in remaining calm and protects from accepting other people's suffering.

Folklore- In paleontology, amber has been used to classify and identify insects that were trapped in the gemstone. Stone Age man instilled the stone with mystical powers and wore it to worship. The Assyrians, Etruscans, Greeks, Phoenicians and Egyptians also ascribed significance and value to the stone. It is a stone that has been in public popularity since the Stone Age.

Sourcing- from the southern shores of the Baltic Sea and the Dominican Republic.

History- Amber is recorded in the Odyssey by Homer mentioning the stone as a princely gift of earrings and a necklace made of amber beads. During the time of Emperor Nero, who was a great admirer of amber, a piece of the stone was worth more than the price of a slave. The ancient Germans called it 'Bernstein' (burn stone) and used it as incense. In the Middle Ages, amber was used for stones to make rosary beads.


Description- a pearly white stone which can range in color from colorless to brown, yellow, pink, green or grey. The clarity also ranges from transparent to translucent. The highest grade moonstone is of a blue sheen with perfect clarity and a colorless body.

Characteristics of the Gem- A variety of feldspar, the different refractive indexes cause the shimmer which is called alternatively schiller or adularescence, due to the intergrowth of two kinds of feldspar. It has a vitreous luster and rates 6 on Moh's scale.

Holistic Properties- attributied to "Mother Earth" and powers of female fertility and related to menstrual cycles. .

Sourcing- Sri Lanka, southern India, Mexico, European Alps and Madagascar

Related Tags: jewelry, jewellery, jewels, gemstones, gems

Eric Hartwell is involved in The World's Best Home Page (please visit to read and share opinions) and Jewels To Love

Your Article Search Directory : Find in Articles

© The article above is copyrighted by it's author. You're allowed to distribute this work according to the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs license.

Recent articles in this category:

Most viewed articles in this category: