Alexandrite is a unique gemstone that is found in various parts of the world. Belonging to the family of chrysoberyl, the special feature of alexandrite is its ability to change colors. The gemstone acquires its name after Alexander the Second, Czar of Russia, the land in which it was first found around 1830. Ural Mountains of Russia, where the gemstone was initially found had some of the best specimens.
Chrysoberyl is formed in granite rocks, pegmatites and alluvia deposits. The formation of alexandrite requires the presence of chromium in the rock formations before process of heat and pressure commences. Alexandrite is amongst the rarest precious stones. The major attraction of the gemstone is to change color from green to red and the interesting fact is that these colors are Russia’s national colors. The change of color occurs depends on the source of light under which the gemstone is kept.
Alexandrite is found in various parts of the world. Some of the countries include India, Srilanka, Madagascar and Brazil.
Russia’s Ural Mountains produced some of the best specimens of alexandrite. The red and color of these gemstones being the national colors of Imperial Russia, the demand grew more, which resulted in the depletion of supply here. Though many other countries across the world produce alexandrite, the gemstones produced by this land were far superior owing to their stunning colors. The quality to change colors too was more prominent in this land.
Brazilian alexandrites are distinctive in color and clarity. Change of color from raspberry red to green with bluish shade makes them very attractive. The bluish green is not at par with the stones found in Russia but the color change is obvious and excellent. The stones are found in Hematita in Brazil, which ranks amongst the important sources of these gemstones today.
Alexandrites found in India change colors incredibly. Color change occurs even when the stones are under fluorescent lighting. The color changes from deep purple to violet or to blood red or purple with red shade. Whatever the color change, the colors are intense and it adds beauty to Indian alexandrites. Visiting Indian mines where alexandrites are produced may be a tough task. The places were mines are located are in the tribal area and tribes are famous for their superstitious beliefs. Hence, it would be difficult to reach the mines let alone take some alexandrite with you.
Alexandrites found in Madagascar are very large. Yellow green alexandrite gemstones are very popular here. The quality of gemstone found here is excellent. Mining is undertaken by the government and reports say that Madagascar has three mining sources where alexandrites are found.
Srilankan alexandrites are green in color during daylight and it turns into brownish red when under artificial light. Rarely, alexandrites are found with cat’s eye effect.
United States Of America
La Madera Mountains in New Mexico produces alexandrite. The gems found in the mines here have the properties to change colors.
Alexandrites are found in various other parts of the world such as Zimbabwe and Tanzania. However, the mining operations in many countries are stopped most of the times owing to unfavorable weather conditions. Weather apart, a majority of alexandrites mines are in primitive land and the conditions are dangerous and mining hence gets all the more difficult. In spite of the odds, Alexandrites are favored for their beauty and excellence.