Tanzanite Gemstone Education
Tanzanite is the gemstone of the twentieth century—it remained Earth’s secret until 1967. Found only at the foothills of Mt. Kilimanjaro in its eponymous Tanzania, the stone is one of the rarest gems in the world. It also exhibits unusual clarity and brilliance, which enhance its signature violet-blue color. Tanzanite is associated with sophistication, confidence and balance, so its owners get allegedly benifited from enhanced willpower and personal insight.
Choosing a stone
- Color: Tanzanite’s magnificent color comes from its trichroism; when viewed from different angles; it displays different shades of blue and purple, so the stone seems to sparkle in all shades of the blue spectrum. Color is the most important quality to consider when investing in a stone, and buyers should look for medium to dark tones with the richest color possible.
- Clarity: Tanzanite usually shows good clarity, so buyers should strive for the cleanest gem they can within their budget. Top-grade stones are both eye clean and loupe clean.
- Angara lets you choose the quality that suits your needs:
- Good (A): Light, violet blue and slightly included
- Better (AA): Medium violet blue and slightly included
- Best (AAA): Rich violet blue; eye clean and highly brilliant
- Heirloom (AAAA): Exceptionally rich violet blue, eye clean and very highly brilliant; the top 1% of tanzanite stones in terms of quality
- Cut: Almost all shapes and cuts work well with tanzanite. The most common cuts are oval and cushion, but round, emerald and trillion-cut are also beautiful. Large stones are not uncommon.
- Enhancements: Almost all rough tanzanites are reddish brown in color, but heat treatment to 500 degrees centigrade brings out the desired blue color. This is a permanent treatment. Angara only works with treated gems that have been AGTA-approved.
- Tanzanite is unique to its eponymous Tanzania
- It was discovered by a Masaai tribesman and first mistaken for a sapphire
- Some 2 million carats of tanzanite were mined between 1967 and 1972
- Angara typically acquires its tanzanite from cutting centers in Jaipur, India
Famous Tanzanite Stones
- The largest faceted tanzanite in the world weighs over 730 carats and is nicknamed “The Queen of Kilimanjaro;” it is set in a tiara that is on display in the Gallery of Gold and Gems at Canada’s Royal Ontario Museum
- Tanzanite is the birthstone for the month of December
- Tanzanite is associated with the zodiac signs Sagittarius and Capricorn
- Tanzanite is the suggested gift for twenty-fourth anniversaries
- Tanzanite is the blue variety of the mineral zoisite