Posted on Thursday, August 31st, 2017 at 3:11 pm by Shannon
Sapphires are the September birthstone, so it’s the perfect time to learn more about these gorgeous gemstones. Not only are they perfect for jewelry but using a sapphire instead of a diamond is one of the hottest engagement ring trends right now! Check out these interesting facts!
1. Sapphires have been treasured for thousands of years. The ancient Romans polished sapphires to be worn as jewelry.
2. The best-known sapphires are the rich blue variety, but they actually come in every color of the rainbow—including pink, yellow, orange, and green. Red sapphires are better known as rubies (both are varieties of the mineral corundum).
3. The rarest type of sapphire is a pinkish orange variety called padparadscha, a name that comes from the Sanskrit word for lotus flower.
4. Sapphires are among the most durable naturally occurring elements in the world. Gemstones are rated on their ability to withstand scratching based on a system called the Mohs Scale of Hardness, and sapphires score a 9 out of 10. The only natural item that can scratch a sapphire is a diamond. The durability of sapphires makes them an excellent choice for engagement rings and other pieces of jewelry that you plan to wear every day.
5. Because of this hardness, sapphire also has industrial uses. The Apple Watch features lab-created sapphire glass in its screen.
6. Throughout history, various cultures have attributed mystical powers to sapphires. In ancient times it was believed that sapphires protected their wearers from evil. In the middle ages, Europeans believed that sapphires cured eye diseases and preserved chastity. Sapphires have been used to symbolize nobility and faithfulness.
7. Deep blue sapphires have long been associated with royalty (which may have contributed to the naming of the color “royal blue”). Sapphires were often worn by medieval kings, who believed that the gemstones would protect them from their enemies.
8. French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte gave to his beloved Josephine a sapphire engagement ring in 1796. The ring, which sold at auction for close to a million dollars last year, features a pear-shaped sapphire next to a pear-shaped diamond, on a simple gold band.
9. Sapphire engagement rings certainly aren’t only for royals. Before the twentieth century, blue sapphires were the favored gemstones for engagement rings. Sapphires were quite popular in Victorian engagement rings when they were often surrounded by smaller diamonds to create floral designs.
10. Many people are surprised by the fun fact that sapphires can exhibit a phenomenon called the “star effect,” or asterism. This occurs when needle-like inclusions create a six-ray star pattern on the surface of a cabochon-cut sapphire, often called a “star sapphire.”
Shopping for a colored gemstone engagement ring or sapphire jewelry? Visit The Ring Austin today!