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September brings us to one of the popular gems in the world the Sapphire! Sapphires come in deep blue, Ceylon blue, blues with slight lilac hues as well as pink and yellow sapphires.
But let's start our focus on the Star Sapphire!
When we talk of Asterism, we talk about rubies and sapphires. Rutile inclusions ( also known as silk), when interacting with light, create the likeness of a star and so is born the star sapphire or star ruby. When needle-like inclusions (often minerals composed of titanium dioxide) intersect following the underlying structure of the crystal, it creates a six-rayed pattern, exhibiting this star-like phenomenon which is called Asterism. These crystals are cut in cabochon as seen in picture, with the star on the top of the dome. On rare occasions we can find stars in gems with more than six beams and, sometimes with even twelve beams. Legends have been told and poems written saying the first star rubies and sapphires were created by a sunbeam, in love with a gorgeous star.
The Black Star of Queensland is believed to be the largest star sapphire ever mined weighing 733 carats, discovered in the 1930s in the Anakie Sapphire fields of the Rubyvale area in the State of Queensland, in northeastern Australia. Followed by the Star of India weighing 563.4 carats. The latter is currently in display at the American Museum of Natural History, in NY city.
The visibility and intensity of the Asterism (the star-like pattern) along with the weight will determine the value of the Star Sapphire. The Black Star of Queensland would make its way around the world, weaving in and out of spotlight and obscurity, with stops in the Smithsonian in the '60s, on Cher's neck in the '70s, and at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto in 2007. Currently, the sapphire is owned by an unknown private party and is not believed to be on public display.
BEAUTIFUL HUES OF BLUE
Sapphire’s breathtaking blues have captured our imagination and inspired designs. Ancient lore tells us that blue sapphire brought spiritual enlightenment, inner peace, wisdom, insight, and the discernment to choose what's right. It is September’s birthstone and celebrates the 5th and 45th wedding anniversary.
The color blue holds an endless fascination. From the high dome of the sky to the oceans that cover two-thirds of the globe’s surface, blue literally surrounds us. Seen from space, Earth is revealed as a shimmering blue planet. It’s little wonder, then, that the breathtaking blue of Sapphire has captured man’s imagination from the beginning. Ranging from the deepest midnight to brilliant cornflower blue, Sapphires have long been prized for their intense, velvety color.
Many people believe that the darker the color, the more valuable the gem. In many instances, this is not the case. Sapphire is one such example where the best and most valuable color is a mid-toned hue. In the case of Blue Sapphire – it is the vibrant “cornflower” hue that is most prized.
The best color for a natural blue sapphire is an intense, deep royal blue. This color of sapphire is AAA quality, the rarest and most valuable. The second best color is a medium rich blue, or AA quality. Any blue sapphires that have a slight gray undertone fit into the A category.