Topaz

Name

It is not clear where the name Topaz comes from. It could be descended from the Sanskrit word "tapaz" (fire), or be named after an island in the Red Sea "Topazios".

Colour

The topaz exists in very different colors - from colorless over yellow, brown, green, red, violet to blue. Its richness of color is due to the different oxidation states of iron and chromium. A purple pink topaz is one of the rarest and most sought-after, but also the blue topaz enjoys great popularity. Some topazes are pleochroic, which means that they show different colors from different viewing angles.

Cut

The topaz is usually cut in different faceted forms or cabochon form.

Cabochon cut: This shape is an unfaceted, round or oval cut, in which the underside is flat and the top is arched outwards. The cabochon cut accentuates and enhances the shimmer inherent in the stone's structure. Those shimmers are especially vivid in cat's eye quartz, falcon and tiger's eye, moonstone and opals.

Faceted cut: There is wide variety of faceted cuts - some of them are displayed in the picture to your right. 

Mineral group

The topaz is a fluorine-containing aluminum silicate that is colored by the elements iron and chromium. He belongs to his own gemstone group with a wide variety of colors.

 

Locations

The most significant topaz occurrences are in Brazil. But there are also a lot of other deposits in Algeria, Asia (Sri Lanka, Japan), Australia, Africa (Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria), Germany, Norway, Mexico and Russia. The popular blue Topaz can also be found in Northern Ireland, Scotland and England.

Mohs scale

The Mohs hardness describes the hardness of a mineral on a scale of 1 to 10 and is named after its inventor, the German mineralogist Friedrich Mohs (1773 - 1839). It is the basis of the hardness test. Friedrich Mohs scored various minerals against each other and arranged them according to their hardness. The scale consists of a series of 10 minerals, each of which "scratches" all standing in front of him. Diamonds have a Mohs hardness of 10 and are therefore the hardest minerals.

  • 1 + 2 can be scratched with the bare fingernail

  • 1 - 5 can be scratched with the knife

  • 6 - 10 can be scratched with pane

The topaz has hardness 8 on the Mohs hardness scale.

Care

Please be aware that most gemstones should not be exposed to direct sunlight for too long since they will gradually bleach and loose their vibrant color. The best way to care for an topaz is to clean it with warm, soapy water and a soft cloth. Ultrasonic cleaners are usually safe except in rare instances where a stone is dyed or treated by fracture filling.

Not recommended: Steam cleaning and subject to heat.

Power

Among the ancient Greeks, topaz was a symbol of strength. Even the Europeans believed in his power to destroy curses and dispel anger.

 

Birthstone

The topaz is the birthstone of November.

Combination

The topaz can be combined as varied as its color splendor. A topaz feels good in any environment - silver, yellow gold or rose gold. Personally, I would combine a yellow, red, brown and green topaz with a warm yellow gold, pink and purple with rose gold and blue primarily in silver or white gold. A colorless topaz can easily be combined with all three materials.

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