Thursday, June 28, 2012

Gemstone of the Week: Sugilite

(Sugilite image found on Cochise College)

Sugilite is a pink and purple lovers dream! This vividly coloured gemstone of discovered in 1944 and wasn't recognized as a mineral until 1976.  It is named after its co-discoverer, a Japanese petrologist named Ken-ici Sugi.  Sugilite is a sodium potassium lithium silicate hydrate and tends to contain various amounts of iron, manganese, and aluminum.  Although crystals are possible, it most often forms as massives or granulars and is used en-cabochon in jewelry.  It's colour can be brown-yellow, pink, or purple, the latter two often being very intensely coloured.   It forms in metamorphosed manganese deposits, as well as, as xenoliths in marble. Sugilite may be found in portions of Canada, Japan, South Africa, and Italy.

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