With a luminous, silvery sheen, natural silver sapphire provides a quiet, brilliant light with understated elegance.
Sapphires are a variety of the mineral corundum. The versatile element has produced many kinds of stones through the natural geothermal processes of the Earth. Sapphires are a gem type with a prism of colors and varieties. While blue sapphires may be the best known, silver sapphires offer their own unique and captivating qualities, making them a must have for any collector or admirer of Earth's natural beauty.
How Does Silver Sapphire Get Its Color?
A silver sapphire will be an opaque stone, immediately setting it apart from most other kinds of sapphire with which you may be familiar. Typically, an opaque sapphire may be seen as a low-quality gem. But in the case of silver sapphire, this is a boon! You see, silver sapphires receive their magnificent silvery sheen from the presence of aluminum oxide present within the material. It provides that sparking body color, with the best examples displaying a metallic gray hue. What's truly amazing, and a testament to Mother Earth is that silver sapphire is a gem whose color occurs without any additional treatment.
What Gives Silver Sapphire Its Glow?
When gemstone occur naturally, it is very common to find inclusions when examining the stone. These are small imperfections in the formation of the crystal. With traditional gems, they are often considered to be undesirable. However, there are always exceptions. When dealing with sapphires, these kinds of inclusions, which crisscross through the gem, are typically referred to as silk. Experts often use the term in describing sapphires specifically, as their presence often lends a satiny appearance to the stone, just below the surface. When considering silver sapphire, the silk of the jewel allows light play across the surface of the gem, giving it a captivating glow. Many have compared this effect to the one witnessed in feldspars such as moonstone and labradorite.
Is Silver Sapphire a Birthstone?
• Among modern birthstones, sapphire is the recognized as the September birthstone. Luckily for those born in this month, there are a wealth of options available, with silver sapphire just one of many choices.
• Prior to the 20th century, sapphires were previously considered the birthstone for the month of April. And to those with an appreciation for antiquated tradition, it is perfectly acceptable to celebrate your birth month in this way.
• For those with an interest in astrology and star signs, you may already be aware that sapphire is the gem associated with Taurus. In the western zodiac, Tauruns are those born from the 21st of April through the 21st of May.
Silver sapphire is an African gem and is sourced from Kenya. Notably, chocolate sapphire, another opaque sapphire gem, comes from this country!
Where is Silver Sapphire Mined?
Silver Sapphire is mined within Kitui County, Kenya. Formally known as the Eastern Province, this area was settled by members of the Kamba tribe. As the fifth largest tribe in the country, they were the ones to bestow the name Kitui upon the area. Within their language, the name means 'where iron goods are made.' This is in reference to the first settlers of the area. Kamba iron-smiths were the first to live in the region, pre-dating British colonization.
Our experts have shared that the mining of silver sapphire still frequently employs laborious traditional methods. This involves a great deal of human effort in excavating the stone with pickaxe and shovel, with many hours of work spent wresting the stone from the Earth!
- Ranks 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness.
- Silver sapphire exhibits a blue-gray to silver-gray body color. A silvery sheen is witnessed as light plays across the surface of the gem.
- Originating from Kitui, Kenya, traditional practices are still employed in mining this stone.
- Silver sapphire is all-natural and untreated.