Sapphire is classified as a precious or fundamental gem together with ruby, emerald and diamond. It can be of different colors like orange, green, or yellow, but the most valued is the deep blue or gentian blue. Some sapphires carved in cabochon form have the optical effect of a star inside.

The most prevalent colors of the sapphires are blue, orange and green. They have vitreous shine and occasionally may appear silky. The variable transparency and possible presence of the inclusions give a milky appearance.

It is necessary to differentiate among the origins. The origin means a country where the mine is located and where it is marketed and handled. For example, we can have a sapphire whose origin is a mine in Sri Lanka and its origin is Thailand too because it is where it has been carved and marketed. Thailand is the leading country of carving and trading sapphires in the world, however, it hardly has a few mines. The main deposits of the world are in Madagascar where sapphires of an exceptional quality have been found. Sri Lanka is still one of the main producers and its quality has been considered highest for many years. So when talking about a Sri Lankan sapphire, we are talking about sapphires with a magnificent color. We also find deposits in Thailand, Australia, Cambodia, China and Vietnam.

The sapphires are valued based on their color, purity, size and weight.


Unlike the diamond, there is no color scale, so there is a great subjectivity about it. In principle, a sapphire with a deep blue color would be the most valuable color. A gray or green mixed with blue would diminish its value, and when blue is mixed with violet, it increases the value. As the degree of color intensifies, the stone loses transparency, so it is necessary to look for an intermediate between intense color and transparency. The light must pass sufficiently but at the same time allow an intense color. Very dark blue sapphires have a lower value.

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As for purity, we will say that the less inclusions there are, the purer the sapphire will be and it be more valuable.


Sapphires are usually presented in oval or emerald size. The cabochon size is the least valuable, since the sapphire does not have enough quality to give facets.


It is a relatively abundant stone, and this is the reason why its price will be inferior to the one of the rubies or emeralds. Sapphires over one carat significantly increase their price.

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