from the Greek word Korallion , is an organic
substance made from the skeletons of a small invertebrate ,the coral
It varies in colour from white to pale pink ,known as angel skin to orange
and deep red known as ox blood ,there is also black coral.Red and pink
are the most valued colours.
It is formed in sub tropical waters and thrives in a narrow temperature range
of 13 to 16 degrees centigrade.It was popular with the Victorians and the best
orange red colour comes from the Mediteranian around Algeria and Tunisia.It is
also found in the sea near Naples and off the coast of the Italian islands and
Coral is usually made into beads or cut as cabochons and was very fashionable
in the 19th century for the reproduction of classical cameos.Pieces like small
twigs are often sold as brooches or carved into figures flowers and animals
Coral reefs are now protected due to the effects of pollution.
very light and is a form of wood fossil.It was popular in Victorian times,particularly
after the death of Prince Albert.Jet is found in Whitby,Yorkshire,although some
was imported from Spain.In Whitby,jet carving became a cottage industry.
French jet is a term used for moulded glass,imitating jet.
has nothing to do with tortoises,it is from the
sea going turtle found in the pacific ocean and west indies and was used in 19th
century jewellery,often inlaid with gold or silver pique work.Moulded tortoishell
was used in Victorian lockets,earrings,chains boxes,combs and snuff boxes.
the word comes from the Greek word Amethistus meaning
They were found in Germany,India,Sri Lanka Russia,Ireland and Burma but since
the 19th century they have come from Brazil and Siberia
They used to be classed as rare and were used for Royal jewellery in the 18th
and 19th century but in 1850 with the discovery of large amounts of Amethyst
in Brazil, prices dropped.
A rich deep purple stone is a sign of quality.
the word comes from the French word citron, meaning
It is a member of the quartz family, related to the amethyst.
It is usually yellow but can be reddish brown or reddish orange.
Natural citrines are found in Brazil and are rare.
In the 19th century they were used in place of expensive Topaz.
Cartier incorporated citrine into a range of jewellery.
Most stones sold as citrine are really smoky quartz or heat treated amethyst.
the word comes from the Latin Granatum meaning pomegranate
It is made from silicate and was found originally in Russia, Sri Lanka,India
and the Czech Republic
Today the mines are found in Brazil ,Mozambique,The Czech Republic and Madagascar
There are many colours of garnet through red, purple ,yellowish brown and green
comes in a
wide range of colours through
red, blue, violet, and pink they are found in Burma and Sri Lanka and are formed
from magnesium aluminium oxide
The large central stone in the Imperial State crown, made in 1838 and called
The Black Prince ruby is in fact a spinel
Constantinople was the trading place for turquoise
which comes from Iran, The Sinai Peninsula and more recently Mexico
It is a hydrous phosphate of copper and aluminium
It was very popular in the 18th and 19th century because of its bright blue colour
and its affordability.
The best turquoise is uniform and flawless but acid from the wearers skin can
organic, made from carbon and succinic acid,it is a fossilised pine resin,
sometimes containing natural insects.The name is derived from the Arabic
word Anbar meaning to burn
Colour varies from pale yellow to brown to dark red and should be quite
clear.Most amber has been submerged for about 30,000,000 years and dates
from the ice age.The Victorians used amber in jewellery and in the Art
Nouveau and Art Deco period long amber beads were worn.It is found in the
Baltic, Burma,Italy,Alaska ,Canada, America and the lebanon and the red
does not occur naturally. The term green amber is generally misused and is in fact copal which comes from Colombia or East Africa
and has been heat treated in an autoclave to make it green. This resin has not matured long enough to be correctly termed amber and should be called copal.