The world of gemstones is a treasure trove of beauty and intrigue, with each precious stone offering a unique story and charm.
Among these gems, there’s one that stands out for its enchanting colour-changing magic – alexandrite. Named after Tsar Alexander II of Russia, this rare and valuable variety of the mineral chrysoberyl has captivated the hearts of gem enthusiasts for centuries.
In this blog, we’ll delve into the fascinating world of alexandrite, exploring its properties, symbolism, and care, and ultimately, understanding what makes it so special.
The Chrysoberyl Gem: Alexandrite
Alexandrite, a true marvel of nature, is not your ordinary gemstone. It belongs to the chrysoberyl family and possesses a remarkable ability to change colour when exposed to different light sources. In daylight, it glistens in a captivating shade of emerald green, reminiscent of the lush meadows.
Yet, under incandescent light, it undergoes a mesmerizing transformation, adopting a rich raspberry-red hue that mirrors the colours of a vibrant sunset.
This enchanting phenomenon is attributed to the presence of chromium within the gem.
Chromium selectively absorbs certain wavelengths of light, influencing the stone’s colour based on the light source. The name “alexandrite” was chosen to honour Tsar Alexander II on his birthday, as this gemstone was first discovered in the Ural Mountains of Russia in 1830.
Properties of Alexandrite
Understanding the properties of alexandrite is key to appreciating its uniqueness:
Alexandrite ranks 8.5 on the Mohs scale, making it a durable gem suitable for everyday wear.
The clarity of alexandrite can vary from transparent to slightly included. Stones with fewer inclusions are more valuable.
Alexandrite is often faceted into brilliant or step cuts to enhance its colour change and brilliance.
Symbolism and Legends
Throughout history, alexandrite has been associated with various symbolic meanings, including:
Much like its ability to change colours, alexandrite is seen as a symbol of adaptability, the capacity to adjust to different situations.
Alexandrite represents the harmony between opposing forces, such as light and darkness or day and night.
Creativity and Innovation:
This gem is believed to stimulate creativity and the ability to see things from different perspectives.
Fortune and Prosperity:
Some cultures believe that alexandrite brings good luck and wealth to its wearer.
In addition to these symbolic meanings, alexandrite holds significance in some cultures as a symbol of love and passion. It represents the ever-changing nature of love and the capacity to adapt to a partner’s evolving needs and desires.
Care and Cleaning
To keep your alexandrite gem in optimal condition, there are some essential care and cleaning tips to follow:
Handle with Care:
Despite its hardness, alexandrite should be handled with care to prevent scratches or chips.
Store your alexandrite gem separately from other gemstones to prevent potential damage.
Clean your alexandrite regularly using a soft, damp cloth and mild soap. Avoid harsh chemicals or ultrasonic cleaners that could harm the stone’s surface.
In the realm of gemstones, alexandrite stands as a symbol of wonder, adaptability, and enduring beauty. Its unique ability to transform under different lighting conditions mirrors the ever-changing nature of life itself.
Whether you are captivated by its mesmerizing colour-changing magic or drawn to its symbolic significance, alexandrite remains a gemstone that has fascinated jewellery enthusiasts for generations.
Also Read: What Color is Alexandrite Stone