of Colored Stones
solid relationship that ASKR Jewelry maintains with the source
mines ensures flawless stones in our jewelry. The authenticity
of our stones can be verified by the National Gem and Jewellery
Authority of Sri Lanka on request.
Gem Varieties of Sri Lanka
Seventy-five varieties of the 200 known minerals
classified as gemstones, have been found in Sri Lanka.
The Corundum family of minerals, formed of oxides of aluminum,
produces the most important range of valuable gemstones found
in Sri Lanka as water-worn pebbles in alluvial deposits or
less frequently in source rocks.
The color of this red corundum is due to traces of chromic
oxide and this probably is its most important shade. Sri Lankan
rubies have clarity and a lustre that are sometimes less than
in the more famous Myanmar rubies which bear the traditional
“Pigeon blood red color”. However, on occasion,
the best quality rubies have been mined in Sri Lanka.
Ruby is one of the most expensive gems and is probably only
second to diamond with rare colors.
Other than the deep red corundum which is known as ruby, any
other colored corundum stones are called sapphires with the
prefix for colors, e.g. blue sapphires, yellow sapphires,
pink sapphires, etc.
discoveries have been made of excellent gems which can be
considered the best blue sapphires in the world; the prized
cornflower blue sapphires. The regular occurrence of these
gems in Sri Lankan gem deposits warrants the statement that
perhaps the best blue sapphires today come from Sri Lanka.
The name Padparadscha is derived from the Sanskrit term for
lotus flower or ‘padma’. Sapphires with a mixture
of pink and orange colors has been called padmaraga in Sri
Lanka for many centuries and recently, the name has been westernized.
The ideal color of a padparadscha is said to be a fusion of
a Sri Lankan lotus and a sunset.
Padparadscha is one of the most expensive gems in the world
with prices similar to those of rubies.
Sapphires in the Corundum Family
Other commercially important shades of the corundum family
found abundantly in Sri Lanka include Yellow Sapphire, Golden
Sapphire, Orange Sapphire, Pink Sapphire, Purple Sapphire,
Green Sapphire, White Sapphire and Color Changing Sapphire
(which is bluish purple in day light and brownish red in incandescent
light). Asteriated Sapphires (Star Ruby & Star Sapphire)
are another type of valuable corundums found in Sri Lanka.
Chrysoberyl, a beryllium aluminum silicate is colored by certain
impurities such as chromic oxide and iron oxide, which result
in various colors such as green, yellow, brown, brownish green.
Alexandrite is the rarest type of chrysoberyl and Sri Lanka
is famous for producing larger Alexandrites with fair color
change. The special beauty and value of this gem is due to
its color change. At their vivid best, Sri Lankan stones can
be grass green in daylight and violet red to raspberry red
in incandescent or artificial light.
Alexandrite is one of the most expensive gems with pricing
similar to fine rubies.
Chrysoberyl Cat’s Eye
In a trade where there are many mineral groups which produce
the Cat’s Eye effect, the Chrysoberyl Cat’s Eye
is considered to be the genuine article and therefore requires
a definite identification. Sri Lankan Chrysoberyl Cat’s
Eyes found in Sri Lanka, display almost the entire color range
known to exist in this variety, from dark yellowish brown
to paler shades of yellow with tints of green.
Cat’s Eye with fine rays and a honey color would be
priced similar to Blue Sapphire.
Other Gemstones found in Sri Lanka
The wide variety of gemstones found in Sri Lanka includes
spinel (e.g. ceylonite, cobalt blue spinel), beryl, garnet,
tourmaline, topaz, quartz (e.g. amethyst) and zircon.