Ceylon Blue Sapphire Gemstone
Treasured for centuries, the rich cornflower hue of Ceylon blue sapphire continues to captivate, both old and new.
Once considered one of the five precious gemstones, sapphires have long been objects of desire. Sapphires occur throughout the world, but in antiquity, gems originating from Ceylon were considered to be the best concerning quality. Shop LC provides your chance to connect with the past and embrace the history of this incredible blue gemstone.
What Color is Ceylon Blue Sapphire?
Blue sapphires are widely known, and sapphire also occurs in a huge spectrum of other colors. Ceylon blue sapphire, however, is known for a particular blue hue, resembling the cornflower. Ranging from light to dark, these blue jewels represent what many consider to be the quintessential sapphire gemstone. It comes as no surprise that these blue gems were associated with the heavens in ancient times. Gazing into a Ceylon blue sapphire is akin to watching a cloudless summer sky.
Other Ceylon Blue Sapphire Quality Factors
Sapphires are known to possess a very good clarity, with view visible inclusions, if any. These transparent stones cleanly reflect light throughout the gemstone, illuminating the stone. Expect Ceylon blue sapphires to appear eye-clean, with few visible inclusions, if any are present at all. Inclusions form within gemstones during the natural processes that create them, and are a clue to a gemstone’s natural formation and identity.
Ceylon blue sapphire is a very durable stone! Ranking nine on the Mohs scale of hardness, this gemstone is highly resistant to scratching and abrasion. It possesses an excellent toughness, meaning it handles knocks and dings very well. Coupled together, a Ceylon blue sapphire is a great choice for a gemstone you want to wear daily.
Expect to find Ceylon blue sapphires in many of the popular calibrated shapes and sizes. Rounds will be the most common shape, as it’s also the most popular. Ovals also enjoy a great following. The shape is a great choice as it gives the appearance of a larger gem without the associated cost of buying one. Other shapes, like pears or marquis, may also be present thanks to the stone’s robust nature.
Most Ceylon blue sapphires from Shop LC will range in carat weight. Typically, they are available in weights between one-half to one full carat. Thanks to the relationships Shop LC forges with vendors and mines, we’re able to offer finished Ceylon blue sapphire jewelry at a cost that would rival just the price of the gem alone in the open market.
Who Should Wear Ceylon Blue Sapphire?
Anyone who loves pure blue hues will also be enchanted by Ceylon blue sapphire. Typically regarded as the premiere blue sapphire, consider collecting this stone if you already appreciate other jewels such as Brazilian Azul Quartz, Masoala sapphire, kyanite, or AAA tanzanite. Blue is a color that transitions well between seasons, making a Ceylon blue sapphire ring a great choice for your signature jewelry piece.
Ceylon Blue Sapphire: The New Diamond?
When one thinks of engagement rings, a diamond solitaire ring is probably what comes to mind. In recent years, however, this has all changed. In 2010, Prince William and Kate Middleton became engaged. Notably, Prince Harry proposed with his mother’s ring, a stunning sapphire halo ring.
The sapphire, originating in Sri Lanka, immediately captivated the world, and the popularity of sapphire engagement rings has steadily grown. The Sri Lankan Gem and Jewellery Association refer to the gemstone as The Ceylon Blue Sapphire. It was originally mined as a 32-carat rough, later shaped into the 12-carat jewel that adorns the Duchesses’ ring. Today, as it adorns Kate Middleton’s ring, it stands as a perfect example of high-quality Ceylon blue sapphire.
Is Ceylon Blue Sapphire a Birthstone?
• Sapphire is the modern September birthstone, and blue sapphire is traditional favorite sapphire. Ceylon blue sapphire makes a fantastic gift for anyone who values tradition and history, or simply loves blue!
• From the perspective of the tropical zodiac, sapphire is associated with Taurus. In western astrology, Taurus represents those born between April 20th and May 21st.
Lore of Blue Sapphire
• In the Ancient World, blue sapphires are thought to be connected with the heavens. In Medieval Europe, it evoked an association with the purity of the sky and the Kingdom of God. It would be common to find these jewels worked into jewelry worn by clergy. In many versions of the Bible, sapphire is considered to be one of the stones in Aaron’s breastplate.
• In Vedic Astrology, practiced in India, blue sapphire was associated with Saturn. The gem’s name references this association, and the Sanskrit roots of the word tell us that sapphire is “dear to Saturn.” It’s important to believers, as Saturn typically carries a negative influence in a person’s horoscope.
• Blue sapphire also carries a strong association with the eyes. Many Medieval texts speak of sapphire’s ability to heal the eyes. Countless recipes describe grinding the stone into a potion that removes impurities from the eye when applied. Other sources state that placing it over the affected eye is enough for it to work.
Location: Sri Lanka
Originally known as Ceylon under British rule, Ceylon became Sri Lanka in 1972 after a 30-year civil war. Sri Lanka is one of the leading gem producing countries in the world, known for the quality of its moonstone and sapphire. Over 100,000 people are employed in the Sri Lankan mining industry, and over two-thirds of this island country has the potential to contain gemstones. Ratnapura, known as the “City of Gems,” is the primary producer of Ceylon blue sapphire, but material continues to be found all over the island.
How is Ceylon Blue Sapphire Mined?
A strictly regulated industry in Sri Lanka, most mining is still carried out through primarily traditional means. Artisanal mining in Sri Lanka is very straightforward. Miners excavate a pit directly into the ground. Pits are usually dug around 50-feet deep, but a high water table can affect this, making some mines shallow while others go deeper.
The vertical tunnel is about ten feet across, allowing a crude pulley system to be installed. A crisscross network of beams keeps the structure intact. Miners will dig horizontal shafts from the main tunnel, filling buckets with alluvium – a mixture of sand, dirt, and gravel, which is then hauled by workers to the surface. It’s then washed through panning techniques, removing the lighter materials, leaving only the gravel behind. If the miners have been lucky that day, sapphire rough is also found!
Ethically Sourcing Sapphire
Miners in Sri Lanka are highly motivated. Often, a mining financier feeds, houses, and pays a wage to miners. When rough gemstones are discovered, miners also receive a portion of the proceeds from the sale of rough.
The government strictly regulates the use of machinery in mining. Primarily, this is to preserve the environment and to secure sustainability within the industry. Once a mine is exhausted, the land is reclaimed to its former status. Post-mining, topsoil is replaced, restoring the location. This makes gemstones from Sri Lanka some of the most ethically sourced gemstones on the market today.
The Sapphire Capital of the World
By some accounts, Sri Lanka produces around 25-percent of the world’s sapphire supply. Ceylon blue sapphires are what skyrocketed the country to fame, and has been embraced within Sri Lankan culture. In 2003, the government adopted blue sapphire as the nation’s official gemstone, recognizing the importance it has played in the country’s history.
- Ranks nine on the Mohs scale of hardness.
- Ceylon blue sapphires represent the quintessential cornflower sapphire blue, ranging in tone from light to dark.
- Shop LC sources these gemstones from Sri Lanka, its historical home.
- The majority of Ceylon blue sapphires undergo heat treatment to improve and create color. Very rarely, a small number may be subject to diffusion to create color.