Jewellers of Birmingham - Diamond Engagement Ring and Wedding Ring Specialists

Sapphire - September birthstone

Mohs Hardness  9

Mined From  Australia, Cambodia, China, India, Pakistan (Kashmir), Kenya, Madagascar, Myanmar (Burma), Nigeria, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, USA, Vietnam

Species   Corundum

Typical Cutting Style   Cabochon and Faceted

Colour  Sapphire is mainly associated with the colour blue but there is a vast array of fancy colours : - pink, purple, green, yellow, orange, violet, colourless and black. There are special names for certain fancy colour sapphires, these are Amethystine or Plum Sapphire for purple, Golden sapphire for yellow or orange yellow, Padparadsha for pinkish orange or orange pink, White sapphire for colourless. Red varieties of corundum are called Ruby, any corundum that does not qualify as ruby is considered sapphire.

Chemistry   Al2 O3 Aluminium oxide is the chemical composition of a sapphire. The colouring pigments found in a blue sapphire are iron and titanium elements. A small iron content results in yellow and green tones and chrome produces pink sapphire.

Treatment  Heat treatment is the oldest and most common treatment used to enhance the colour of a natural sapphire. Most sapphires have had a slight heat treatment to make them more desirable. Experts estimate that up to 95% of sapphires undergo some form of heat treatment.

Inclusions  Blue sapphires typically have some inclusions, but they generally have a better clarity than rubies. Blue sapphires with extremely high clarity are rare and very valuable.

Cleaning & Care  Warm soapy water and a soft toothbrush will help maintain the sparkle of your sapphire. Ultra sonic machine cleaning and steam cleaning are usually safe but never for fracture or cavity filled stones. Avoid strong detergents and excessive scrubbing on oiled sapphire, if you are not sure visit us on a yearly basis for a FREE clean and polish service.

Storing Your Sapphire  When you are not wearing your sapphire jewellery place it in a cloth pouch or in a separate compartment to other gemstone jewellery ( i.e sapphires and rubies are 9 on the Mohs scale and diamond is 10, a diamond is 140 times harder than sapphire and ruby ) your sapphire could easily get scratched by any diamond jewellery.

Interesting Facts  Sapphires are associated with royalty and romance, particularly when Lady Diana Spencer was given a stunning sapphire and diamond cluster ring by Prince Charles as her engagement ring. It was later given to Kate Middleton by Prince William.

Sapphires are one of the big 3 coloured gemstones, the other two are Ruby and Emerald. In ancient Greece and Rome, kings and queens were convinced that blue sapphires protected the wearer from envy and harm. During the middle ages, the clergy wore sapphires to symbolise heaven.

Traditionally, sapphire symbolizes nobility, truth, sincerity, and faithfulness and sapphire is the traditional gift for a 45th wedding anniversary.