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Topaz

The name of the topaz probably comes from Topazos Island, located in the Red Sea called Zabargad. It is a fine stone that offers a wide variety of colors in its natural state. Among the most coveted is the Imperial Topaz, which is mainly found in Brazil (Ouro Preto) in its characteristic deep golden to orange-red color.

Color

Blue is the most famous, also yellow, orange, reddish-brown, red, violet, light green, pink

Family

Silicate

Specifications

Topaz is a mineral from the family of silicates. Its chemical formula is as follows: Al2 SiO4 (F, OH) 2. With its beautiful vitreous luster, it is transparent to translucent and comes in all colours from colourless to green and brown, through yellow, gold, pink ... and blue. Some blue topazes used in jewellery are colourless gems irradiated to obtain an intense blue tint. The colour palette presented by the Imperial Topaz ranges from gold and violet to pink, peach, cognac and bright red. The rarest colors are 'sherry', cherry, (only 0.5%) and purple, while the more common ones revolve around the golden yellow.

The hardness of the topaz is high (8 on the Mohs scale). It is particularly popular because of its variety of colours. It is generally pure, its brightness is lively. Some specimens are moreover pleochroic, that is to say that they show different colours according to the angle of observation.

Origin

Topaz jewels are rare, the old Pakistani deposits are now almost exhausted, just like those in Russia. There are some veins in the United States and even in France, in Auvergne (Echassières) or in Burgundy (Gilly-sur-Loire). However, the main deposits exploited commercially today are those of Brazil. From the nearby Belo Horizonte mine in the Ouro Peto region, imperial topazes are extracted from a layer of kaolin, which also contains quartz and hematite.

Virtues

Blue topaz is said to be particularly beneficial for people who engage in intellectual or artistic activity. It brings inspiration, clarity of mind and avoids rigidity and preconceived ideas. It urges the wearer to be faithful and honest, to be good and transparent with others.

If one has to speak in public, blue topaz will protect voice and throat issues in general. It is also associated with the throat chakra, and it is here that the stone should be placed for 20 minutes before making a speech or singing.

Blue topaz also has beneficial properties to fight against depression, anxiety and stress as well as migraines related to these problems. It reduces bad moods and builds confidence.

Finally, its action on the circulatory system will provide an improvement in cases of varicose veins and thromboses.

History

The Topaz has a long history: it is mentioned in the Bible, where it was set in Aaron's breastplate (Ezekiel 28, 13-16). It was believed to have the power to render invincible. It is still cited as one of the twelve stones used in the founding of Jerusalem.

The deep orange topaz called imperial is very popular. Since antiquity it is reserved for sovereigns because its color was reminiscent of the sun. It owes its name to the Russian Tsars who appropriated almost the entire production of the Ural Mountains.

The Egyptians attributed powers to the topazes and used them as amulets, as well as the Romans and Greeks: the latter believed that they gave them strength and could even make them invisible ... Whereas in the Middle Ages, it was thought that they improved the view! However, these legends and beliefs were not specifically related to blue topaz.

In London, at the British Museum, you can admire some beautiful topazes from Brazil, including a blue one of 614 carats (122.8 grams), and another of Marambaya, in Minas Gerais, which weighs about 3.6kg and has a beautiful light blue hue.

The Chicago Natural History Museum exhibits a Brazilian blue topaz of 5890 carats (1,178kg). Even more impressive: The Fersman Museum in Moscow has a blue-green topaz weighing 32 kilos!

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