For Customers outside of USA
Antique Nineteenth Century Handcrafted Genuine Natural One-Third Carat (Plus) Faceted Pastel Pink Emerald ("Morganite").
CLASSIFICATION: Faceted Pink Beryl (Morganite).
ORIGIN: Elba Island, Italy. 19th Century. Cut in 19th Century Yekaterinburg, Russia.
SIZE: 4mm Square. 3mm Thick. All measurements approximate.
WEIGHT: 0.41 carats.
NOTES: Upon request we can set your gemstone as a ring, earring, or pendant.
DETAIL: Most everyone is familiar with emeralds and aquamarine. But did you know both are varieties of the gemstone beryl? Dark green beryl is known as emerald, and tends to be infested with inclusions. Light blue-green beryl on the other hand, aquamarine, tends to be transparent, lightly colored, and more frequently found eye clean to flawless. What light blue-green is to aquamarine, light green is to "green beryl". Green beryl is aquamarine, except that whereas aquamarine light blue-green color comes from iron impurities, the light green of beryl comes from vanadium. Like aquamarine, green beryl is generally found in better qualities than emerald, which is generally heavily included and fractured. But did you ever hear of pink beryl? Pink beryl is known in Russia as pink emerald - which is an apt description as emerald is beryl - as the only difference between them is that pink beryl is colored by manganese impurities; whereas other varieties of beryl are colored blue to green by impurities of iron (aquamarine), chromium (emerald), and vanadium (green beryl). For those few Americans who have ever heard of pink beryl, they might know it better as "Morganite", so named for the gemstone collector and capitalist J. P. Morgan.
Just when exactly pink beryl (or if you prefer, "pink emerald" or "Morganite") was first discovered is a source of contention. This particular specimen came from Elba Island, Italy, sometime around 1880, and was subsequently hand cut in Yekaterinburg, Russia. However an American gemologist by the name of George Kunz is officially credited with the first "discovery" of pink beryl in California, and subsequently named it "Morganite" in 1911 for the financier and gemstone collector extraordinaire J.P. Morgan. Pink beryl was also discovered "for the first time" (probably about the fifth time, actually) in Madagascar in 1908. Even the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles is confused, claiming that pink beryl was "first" discovered in the early 1900's nearby.while at the same time displaying a large pink beryl which was donated to the museum in 1888. We also know that "pink emerald" has been produced here in Siberia since the late 19th century; though it is not known when it is first claimed to have been discovered or produced. Despite the fact that "pink emeralds" are produced in Siberia, this particular piece comes from Elba Island, Italy.
Imported from Italy, the gemstone was hand crafted and faceted by a 19th century Russian artisan, part of an heritage renown for the production of the elaborate gemstones and jewelry of the Czars of Medieval, Renaissance, and Victorian Russia. The result is an exquisite and incredibly delicately colored precious gemstone with lots of depth and gorgeous tone. It is a very lightly hued, pastel pink gemstone, with lots of sparkle and luster. Morganite is noted for being a rather "dirty" gemstone, like emerald possessing lots of included material. However this specimen is no worse than eye clean, and even in these 500% photo enlargements, it is difficult to discern any significant blemishes. To the naked eye it is without flaw, delicately hued, and alive with sparkles. Good quality pink beryl/morganite/pink emerald is in short supply and can be very costly. It is a quite uncommon and fairly scarce gemstone.
Under magnification the gemstone shows the unmistakable characteristics of having been hand crafted. The coarseness of the 19th century finish is considered appealing to most gemstone collectors, and is not considered a detriment, or detract from the value of a gemstone. These characteristics are not only expected of hand-finished gemstones, most serious collectors consider such gemstones more desirable, possessed of greater character and uniqueness when compared to today's cookie-cutter mass-produced machine-faceted gemstones. Unlike today's computer controlled machine produced gemstones, the cut and finish of a gemstone such as this is the legacy of an artisan who lived two centuries ago.
This gemstone possesses superb luster and sparkle, and to the eye is completely transparent, but one cannot say with absolute certainty that it is unconditionally flawless. True, the blemishes it possesses are not visible to the naked eye, and the gemstone can be characterized at a minimum, to use trade jargon, as "eye clean", it even approaches "loupe clean". To the eye it is indeed flawless; however magnified 600%, as it is here, you might be able to just barely pick out one or two slight imperfections within the gemstone, barely perceptible even at such high magnification. Of course the same may said about almost any natural gemstone. An absolutely flawless gemstone simply is not the rule in nature. Most absolutely flawless gemstones will upon close examination be revealed to be synthetic. You might also notice under magnification occasional irregularities in the cut and finish.
Naturally these characteristics are not only expected of hand-finished gemstones, you must also consider that two centuries ago the mining techniques prevalent did not allow the ultra deep mining operations which are so common today. Keep in mind that two centuries ago mankind was more or less limited to surface deposits or near surface deposits of gemstones. Higher quality gemstones which today are routinely mined from beneath hundreds of meters, even kilometers beneath the earth's surface, were simply inaccessible then. For these reasons antique gemstones must be appreciated as antiques first, gemstones second. The relatively superlative quality of contemporary gemstones routinely mined from deep beneath the earth's surface today were simply not accessible two centuries ago, or at least, only rarely so. However for most, the unique nature and character of antique gemstones such as this more than makes up for included imperfections which by and large, are (if at all) only visible under high magnification.
HISTORY: The most widely recognized varieties of beryl are aquamarine and emerald. The origin of the name "aquamarine" is Latin; "aqua", for water; "marina", for sea. Ancient Greeks believed Aquamarine held the essence and spirit of the sea. Wearing this stone as a talisman was believed to protect from adversities at sea, prevent sea sickness, and promote courage and a strong will, and to quicken the intellect. Ancient Greek jewelers made extensive use of aquamarine, which came to them via Arabian camel caravan and ocean-going Mediterranean galleys. To Christians from the earliest times through the Medieval era, aquamarine symbolized harmony, happiness, innocence, youthfulness, and purity. It was held for its amuletic properties, believed to help protect against evil and conquer wickedness.
Emeralds were amongst the earliest gemstones traded by mankind, since the 5th millennium B.C. Prominent in ancient Babylon's gemstone markets, one of the earliest sources for these precious gemstones were Egyptian emerald mines near the Red Sea, first worked in the 3rd millennium B.C. The Greeks worked the same mines from the time Alexander the Great conquered Egypt. The last ruler of the Greek Ptolemaic Dynasty in Egypt, Cleopatra VII, Queen of Egypt, was often depicted and described wearing fabulous emeralds. The remains of "Cleopatra's Mines" were discovered in 1817 near Aswan on the Red Sea coastline. Emeralds were also quite favored in the Roman Empire, especially by Roman Emperors. Emerald mines in Upper Egypt provided medieval and Renaissance Europe with emeralds up through the 16th century. Emeralds were the most prized of the Russian Crown Jewels during the centuries long-rule of successive Russian Czars.
There are other members of the beryl family much less known then their famous cousins. Pale green beryl is essentially a green version of aquamarine. Pink and peach beryl, colored by manganese impurities, is known as morganite. Morganite was discovered late 1800's and is named after gem collector extraodinaire J.P. Morgan. Golden Beryl is colored by uranium impurities, and is known as heliodor. The rarest variety is red beryl, also known as "bixbite", and also derives it color from manganese impurities. The colorless variety of beryl known as goshenite is little used as a gemstone, however it played a very important role in history. In antiquity beryl was used for the lenses of spectacles - and was the source of the German word for spectacles, "brille". Goshenite is very brilliant, and has been used occasionally as a diamond substitute. In fact the word brilliance is probably derived from the ancient greek word for beryl, "berullos", which means crystal. Both pale green beryl, golden beryl, and pink beryl; as well as aquamarine and emerald, are found in Russia.
Beryl had been used as a physician's tool and gazing stone since ancient times. Those beliefs persist today. Beryl is metaphysically attributed with the ability to cure a number of intestinal and stomach ills, such as nausea, ulcers, and seasickness. Legend says that Beryl was used to ward off demons and evil spirits. Ancient literature notes that Pliny used powdered beryl to cure eye injuries. It is said to protect travelers from danger and to treat disorders of the heart and spine. Other legends about Beryl indicate it was used to promote cheerfulness and marital love, to retard laziness, and maintain youthfulness. Beryl is also the principle source of beryllium, which is used in the manufacture of light-weight metal alloys of high tensile strength and superior hardness and fatigue resistance.
SHIPPING OPTIONS: All purchases are backed by an unlimited guarantee of satisfaction and authenticity. If for any reason you are not entirely satisfied with your purchase, you may return it for a complete and immediate refund of your entire purchase price. Most of these antique gemstones were originally part of two collections, one originating in India principally composed of gemstones originally mined in India, Burma, Ceylon, and Siam, and then hand faceted in India. The addition of a second accumulation of antique gemstones originally mined in the Urals in the mid to late 19th century (including alexandrite) completed the collection. These gemstones as well were hand finished. The Urals have been one of the world's major sources of precious and semi-precious gemstones for many centuries. As well, additional specimens are occasionally acquired from other institutions and dealers in Eastern Europe and Asia. These antique gemstones are now in the United States and are available for immediate delivery.
We ship inventory from the USA order fulfillment center near Seattle, Washington. Your purchase will ordinarily be shipping within 48 hours of payment. A certificate of authenticity is available upon request. We prefer your personal check or money order over any other form of payment - and we will ship immediately upon receipt of your check (no "holds"). We will accept PayPal payments. Please see our "ADDITIONAL TERMS OF SALE".