gemstone, any of various minerals highly prized for beauty, durability, and rarity. A few noncrystalline materials of organic origin (e.g., pearl, red coral, and amber) also are classified as gemstones. Gemstones have attracted humankind since ancient times, and have long been used for jewelry.
What qualifies a gemstone?
What Makes A Mineral A Gemstone? … Most are minerals and are cut from naturally occurring crystals. To qualify as a gem, the specimen should be hard and tough to resist scratching and have beautiful clarity, colour or ‘fire’. Value is based on rarity and rare quality.
How do you tell if a stone is a gemstone?
The first step is to check for any inclusion on the stone with the naked eye. If you’re unable to see any inclusions with your naked eyes, then use a magnifying glass of at least 10X magnification to find out if the gemstone contains any inclusions.
What is the classification of a gemstone?
There are two classifications of gemstones: Precious and Semi-Precious. Precious stones are Sapphires, Rubies, and Emeralds. These three gems are the only stones that are called precious. Semi-Precious stones are Amethyst, Aquamarine, Citrine, Garnet, Onyx, Opal, Peridot, Tanzanite, and Topaz.
What are the 3 factors that make a gemstone?
The gems that crystallize underground typically require very high pressures and temperatures. Time and space are fairly straightforward requirements. The right combination of ingredients, heat, and pressure must last long enough for the minerals to crystallize. They also need room to grow.
Can all minerals be a gemstone?
Although most gemstones are considered minerals, some are also non-mineral. … When a mineral is regarded as rare and exceptionally beautiful, we refer to it as a gemstone (for instance diamond, emerald, ruby, and sapphire). All minerals can be gemstones, but not all gemstones can be minerals.
What is the difference between rocks and gems?
Rocks do not have a special chemical or mineral makeup. While most rocks are not cut or polished to be used as gemstones, some rocks, including lapis lazuli, are classified as gems. Minerals occur naturally within the earth’s surface and are solid formations.
How can you tell a real gemstone from a fake?
Fake stones are going to be duller than real rubies. If the stone in questions is darker shade of red, don’t immediately mark it down as fake. It might be a real stone, just not a ruby. Garnets are a gemstone that are similar to rubies, but instead of having the bright red luster, they are a darker shade gemstone.
How do you identify a rough gemstone?
To identify a rough gemstone, review its mineral qualities, inspect its streak and examine its luster. Each gemstone has its own particular set of qualities you can catalog to help you with identification. Check with your state’s department of mines and minerals to locate regions suitable for rockhounding in your area.
How can you tell if a gemstone is natural or synthetic?
A natural gem is any gemstone that is entirely the product of nature. It’s unaltered by humans in any way, except for ordinary cutting and polishing. A synthetic gem is the same as a natural gem (in terms of physical, chemical and optical properties), EXCEPT that it has been made by humans.
How do I know what kind of stone I have?
Look at the luster.
- To check for luster, turn the stone, allowing light to reflect off its surface. View the stone with the naked eye and with a 10x loupe.
- Determine if the stone looks dull, waxy, metallic, shiny (adamantine), glass-like (vitreous), greasy, or silky.
What are the 7 gems?
Strictly speaking the precious stones are only seven in number—the diamond, the pearl, the ruby, the sapphire, the emerald, the oriental catseye, and the alexandrite; but to these are often added the so-called semi-precious stones—such as the amethyst, the topaz, the tourmaline, the aquamarine, the chrysoprase, the …
What do you call a group of gems?
The word lapidary relates to precious stones, especially the things people do with them such as cut, polish, and set them in a fancy bracelet. … You can also call a person who works with such stones a lapidary. Lapidary comes from the Latin word, lapis, for stone.
How is gemstone measured?
Carat weight: Size of a gemstone is generally expressed by its weight. The weight of a gem is measured by metric carat, which is 1/5 of a gram.
What is the rarest gemstone?
Musgravite. Musgravite was discovered in 1967 and is arguably the rarest gemstone in the world. It was first discovered in Musgrave Ranges, Australia, and later found in Madagascar and Greenland.
How do you determine the quality of a gemstone?
A gemstone should not be so dark that its color is obscured, nor so light that its color appears pale or indistinct. Saturation describes how pure or intense a color appears, and it is a key component in determining a gemstone’s value.