Sapphires have been held dear for hundreds of years. It is believed that Ancient Romans were one of the first civilizations in history that have shaped sapphires to wear them as jewelry. Due to their dazzling blue color, many ancient cultures have associated sapphires with mystical powers. In the middle ages, various religious leaders wore sapphires to symbolize heaven and eternal happiness, and the public believed that sapphire would bring them blessings from above. Sapphires have been a symbol of royalty for many years. Medieval kings and queens wore sapphire talismans and rings because they believed that they would protect them against their enemies, and envy. The sapphire engagement ring gifted to Lady Diana by Prince Charles is one of the signs why sapphire is considered to be a royal gem.
Throughout history, people presumed that sapphires held spiritual powers. According to these presumptions; sapphires assist to promote dreams and astral travel, they increase intuition and clairvoyance, and they support loyalty and fidelity.
Sapphire is a variety of the corundum mineral, and it is typically found in blue. Sapphire owes its fascinating color to the trace amounts of chromium in its chemical structure. Technically speaking, every non-red shade of the corundum mineral is specified as sapphire. However, the signature color of the gem is blue, and it is undeniably the most famous blue gem. Sapphire is a gem which has a pleochroic nature. This means that a sapphire will show lighter or deeper colors depending on the angle of light that strikes the gem.
Sapphires tend to have some internal imperfections, which are called inclusions by gemologists. However, a sapphire, generally has fewer inclusions than its cousin ruby. These internal characteristics generally indicate that the sapphire is natural and not a synthetic one. Among these inclusions, we may count needles, color zoning, and fingerprints.
Needles are long, thin substances of tubes filled with liquid or gas particles, or crystals trapped inside.
Color zoning is the uneven color distribution of a sapphire.
Fingerprints are a commonly found inclusion in corundum family gemstones such as sapphire and ruby. After a gem grows, the may crack on the inside may later be healed and leave marks.
The external characteristics of sapphires, which affect their surfaces are called blemishes. Among these blemishes, we may regard scratches, and nicks.
Just like its cousin ruby, sapphire has a hardness rating of 9 on the Mohs scale, which makes it a very durable gemstone to be used in rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. In fact, sapphire is the second hardest gemstone, right after the diamond.
Sapphire sources are located in countries such as Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Nigeria, and the most famous Bruma.
While there is no globally accepted sapphire grading system, they may be classified according to their external and internal features, mainly their color, and internal clarity.
Approximately 50% to 70% of all the natural sapphires in the world are in this category. Sapphires of this quality are known to have visible inclusions.
Roughly 20% to 30% of sapphires in the world are in this category. Sapphires of this quality are fairly included, and they have a medium hue.
Sapphires of this quality are somewhat rare as they only make up for 10% of all the sapphires earth has to offer.
This category contains the rarest sapphires in the world. Sapphires in this category make up for a mere 1%. They have very light inclusions, and they are known have deep hues.