223. Sapphire

Sapphire is a variety of the mineral corundum, an Aluminum Oxide – when it is of a color other than red or dark pink. The red sapphire is called a ruby and is considered to be a different gemstone.

Trace amounts of other elements such as iron/ titanium/chromium can give corundum blue, yellow, pink, purple, orange, or greenish color.

Pink-orange sapphires are also called padmaraga. Pure chromium is the distinct impurity of rubies. However, a combination of chromium and titanium can give a sapphire a color distinct from red.

It is the hardest substance known, second only to diamond. Normally sapphires are blue in color. But purple, green, pink, white, gold and orange sapphires have been found.

It is supposed to possess the mystical qualities of purifying one’s mind and promoting peace of mind.

The stone is formed from a variety of aluminum oxide corundum.

Sri Lanka is a notable source of all colors of sapphires.


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