Top ten precious gemstones – Part 2
Top ten precious gemstones part 2.
At the beginning of October!
Wow, how time flies.
I composed a blog entitled Top ten precious gemstones.
I had intended it to be a single post, however due to the size of the blog, I decided to split into two instalments.
The first instalment contained the first five out of ten of the top ten precious gemstones.
And, if you haven’t guessed it yet.
This post will contain the next five out of ten of the top ten precious gemstones, numbers six to ten to be exact.
So, without any further delay, I know you are all dying to know what numbers six to ten are.
Well, aren’t you?
Let’s get started.
Like emerald, aquamarine is a variety of beryl. In times gone by this stone was much sought after and greatly appreciated.
Perhaps even more than it is today.
In the nineteenth century, people preferred the greener stones that evoked the colour of the sea (hence the name aquamarine)
Today, however, the more blue aquamarine stones are the more popular they are.
The best quality aquamarine gemstones are found in Brazil and Pakistan.
In recent years, aquamarine was added to the list of “The Big 5”, to join the likes of Diamond, Emerald, Ruby, Sapphire, and the previous addition, Tanzanite, making it now part of “The Big 6”.
Despite their organic origin, pearls are gemstones that are widely used in jewellery.
They are the result of the defence mechanism of some bivalve molluscs such as Oysters, to an irritant.
The animal secretes layers of nacre (mother-of-pearl) around the irritant to form a structure that is more or less spherical.
This process is triggered naturally but may also be induced by inserting a grain into the mollusc, around which the animal will make the pearl.
Pearls produced artificially like this are known as cultured pearls.
The colour of pearls ranges from silky white to black.
Coral, is the protective limestone skeleton of tiny marine animals called coral polyps.
Coral polyps live in colonies and their skeletons join together to form this precious stone.
Anyone else shuddering at the thought of this?
For some reason.
I know I am.
Coral comes in many colours including red, pink, white, blue, and black.
The red variety has been used in jewellery for millennia.
The precious stone known as Jade is either one of two different minerals, jadeite or nephrite.
Both are fine-grained and remarkably hard which makes them perfect for engraving.
Jade objects have been made in China for 2,000 years if not more.
Green is the most prized colour of Jade, although it comes in a range of colours particularly the jadeite variety.
10. Quartz Group
This group includes quartz and every other form of crystallised silicon dioxide (SiO2) found in rocks.
The fine-grained variety called flint was one of the first material used by humans.
Many members of this group are used in jewellery, among them Agate, Jasper, Amethyst, and Citrine.
The purest form of the crystallised silicon dioxide is the colourless rock crystal which lacks the chemical impurities that give quartz its colour.
The popularity of Opal, also part of the quartz group has changed throughout the centuries.
It is one of the few non-crystalline precious stones and has a great tendency to lose its water molecules and to crack.
Opals are known for their iridescence or opalescence as its opals we are talking about.
So there you have it.
One of the many Top Ten lists of precious gemstones.
This one is courtesy of the National Geographic and although some of the gemstones listed would be included on my list, not all would make it.
I would love to know what would be included in your Top Ten precious gemstones.
Why not comment below, it would be interesting to find out what everyone else would include?