Rare Tanzanite, unique to Africa, is a precious gemstone with distinct hues ranging from luscious blues to luxurious purples. Tanzanite is one of the world’s most remarkable and sought-after precious gemstones and this gem can only be found in one place on earth: deep in the Tanzanian foothills, home to the magnificent Serengeti with its abundant wildlife and the awe-inspiring grandeur of Mt. Kilimanjaro.
According to experts, the chances of finding tanzanite anyplace else on the planet are less than one in a million, therefore this gemstone is at least a thousand times rarer than a diamond due to its solitary source and limited supply. It is also rare to locate two stones that are exactly the same hue, therefore matching pairs are constantly in high demand.
The Exquisite Colours of Rare Tanzanite
Tanzanite is a brilliant gemstone with multi-dimensional colour that sets it apart from other jewels, even rivaling the magnificence of blue sapphire. Tanzanite is trichroic, which means that when it is extracted from the earth, Tanzanite crystals radiate three distinct and exquisite colours: blue, violet, and burgundy, resulting in a spectacular kaleidoscope of colour when this gem is cut and polished. Because Tanzanite radiates this astonishing array of hues, it is considered one of nature’s most beautiful phenomena.
From light blues and lilacs to deep indigos and violets, tanzanite comes in a wide spectrum of exceptional colours. The more vibrant hues are found in larger stones, whereas pastel colours are found in smaller stones.
While most precious gemstones have histories thousands of years old, the discovery of rare Tanzanite is a relatively new one in comparison. Tanzanite was produced roughly 585 million years ago, but it was only discovered 50 years ago beneath the earth’s surface. According to local legend, a Maasai tribesman, Ali Juuyawatu, came across the blue, transparent crystal on the ground in 1967.
At first, it was believed that a new sapphire deposit had been found, however, it was quickly established that a completely new gemstone had been discovered.
Following the launch of a large advertising campaign to educate the public about the discovery of Tanzanite, this previously unknown gemstone become a highly fashionable and sought-after jewel. The American Gem Trade Association designated tanzanite as a new birthstone for December in 2002, demonstrating the stone’s enormous popularity (AGTA).
Tanzanite Gemstone Formation & Structure
Boudins are sausage-shaped structures in which Tanzanite forms. Boudins are strained pegmatitic veins that have broken down into smaller fragments and small pockets of Tanzanite stones can be found inside the boudins. Not every boudin produces tanzanite and many of those which do include low-grade material that isn’t suitable for jewellery.
The presence of trace amounts of vanadium and chromium in Tanzanite’s structure gives it its distinctive purple-blue colour and the pleochroism in tanzanite is so powerful that it can be seen without a dichroscope by just spinning the stone and looking at it in different directions.
Most Tanzanite is now carefully mined by hand to avoid damage to the precious little supply earth has given us. It is vital to remember that tanzanite measures between 6 and 7 on the Mohs scale and is therefore not a very hard stone. As a result, Tanzanite is more susceptible to scratches and damage and is better suited to dress jewellery as it may not be the best stone to wear in an everyday piece.
Like any natural material, the intensity of Tanzanite’s crystal blue colour varies from stone to stone. Some are mesmerized by the cool blue stones, while others are transfixed by the unusual blue-violet hue of the gem. Whatever your choice, the highest quality Tanzanite is now available to you in variable cuts and settings: from elegant, classical styles to more modern designs for the discerning investor.
Rare Tanzanite Care
Clean Tanzanite by using a soft toothbrush and luke soapy water. Rinse after cleaning and dry with a soft cloth.
It is not advised to wear Tanzanite when busy with vigorous activities; but rather to adorn yourself with Tanzanite jewellery for special occasions.
Both Emerald and Tanzanite are on the same hardness scale of 6-7, so take care when having repairs are done on your Tanzanite jewellery, extreme temperature changes can crack the stone.
The hardness is also related to the durability of the gemstone. Tanzanite will scratch when in contact with hard objects. Separate jewellery boxes or pouches for storage are recommended.
A general rule with Jewellery is to take it off when working with liquids and even more so with your Tanzanite jewellery pieces. Water compromises the vibrancy and shine of the stone.
Rare Tanzanite from Mark Solomon Jewellers
Due to limited supply, Tanzanite is a unique, personal statement of style and beauty. Only a privileged few will possess this valuable and exciting discovery of the Twentieth Century. Mark Solomon Jewellers offer a range of Rare Tanzanite jewellery, from rings to bracelets, as well as loose Tanzanite stones. Whether for investment purposes or with the intention of personally selecting the ideal diamond for your diamond engagement ring, we’re confident you’ll find the most gorgeous African tanzanites for sale at our Cape Town showroom.
Mark Solomon is a renowned Cape Town manufacturing jeweller as well as an award-winning Cape Town jewellery designer and takes much pride in turning a design into an exquisite reality within just a few days.