Sapphire has long symbolized truth, sincerity, and faithfulness.
Tradition holds that Moses was given the ten commandments on tablets of sapphire, making it the most sacred gemstone.
Because sapphires represent divine favor, they were the gemstone of choice for kings and high priests. The British Crown Jewels are full of large blue sapphires, the symbol of pure and wise rulers.
Since sapphire symbolizes sincerity and faithfulness, it is an excellent choice for an engagement ring.
The sapphire diamond ring that is posted to the right is of a highly desirable blue color. You will want to find side stones which are complimentary in color and dont detract from the color of the center stone.
Sapphire diamond rings are starting to be more and more popular as engagement rings. Princess Diana sported a spectacular Blue Sapphire Diamond ring which sent the jewelry world into a frenzy to copy the design.
Sapphire is also the birthstone for September, the month when the most babies are born.
When shopping for sapphire qualities and prices are as wide ranging as its colors. Fine yellow, orange, and pink sapphires will command a fairly high price due to their rarity. Others, such as the dark, dark blue that almost looks black, will be very inexpensive.
The most valuable sapphires have a medium intense, vivid blue color. The best sapphires hold the brightness of their color under all different types of lighting. Any black, gray, or green overtones mixed in with the blue will reduce a stone’s value. In general, a more pastel blue would be less preferred than a vivid blue but would be priced higher than an overdark blackish blue color.
- Blue stones are best with a violet overtone; a green overtone is less desirable, as are gray-tinged or lightly colored blues.
- Pinks should be of uniform color. Best is “hot” pink; little to no lavender or brown overtone.
- Purple should resemble fine amethyst, but somewhat redder.
- Stay away from yellows with a brownish cast. Orange-Yellows are worth more than pure yellow.
- Greens should not show an olive or gray tinge.
As with all gemstones, sapphires which are “clean” and have few visible inclusions or tiny flaws are the most valuable. However some very fine sapphires, in particular those from Kashmir, have a velvety mist-like texture which enhances the richness of the blue.
Sapphires are most often cut in a cushion shape – a rounded rectangle – or an oval shape. You can also find smaller sapphires in round brilliant cuts and a wide variety of fancy shapes, including triangles, squares, emerald cuts, marquises, pear shapes, baguette shapes, and cabochon cuts, or smooth domes.
Sapphires have become more available in the past twenty years because some light, cloudy, or over-dark sapphire can now be heated at very high temperatures to improve the color or clarity. This process, which dissolves trace elements already present in the sapphire, is completely stable.
There is no price difference between heated and non-heated material except for at the very top of the market, where the country of origin will also make a difference in the price. About 90 percent of the sapphire on the market today has been heated to make sure it has reached the best possible color and clarity.
The very popular Ceylon Sapphire will be a cornflower blue, or light blue, and is very rare.
Sapphire is perhaps the toughest and most durable gemstone
When shopping for a sapphire you should look for a stone with even color distribution. Many times cheap sapphires will show distinct color banding that will greatly affect the value of the stone. Take time to inspect the stone carefully.
Most sapphires will be generally free of inclusions. But again, base your decision on color and not on clarity. Almost all will have inclusions.
Most sapphires should be well cut and proportioned. Stones showing off-shapes should be priced at a lower level than well cut stones.
One trend we’ve noticed is the popularity of pink sapphires. More and more of these are being bought up, usually on fun jewelry pieces. Perhaps it is because they so closely resemble the Pink Diamonds which are gaining popularity without the huge price the Pink Diamond carries.
Ancient Persians believed that the Earth rests on a gigantic Sapphire with the celestial heavens reflecting its color. The stone symbolizes clear thinking and is thought to strengthen the will of the person wearing it.
Star Sapphire, also called “The stone of Destiny” has its own particular legend. The three chatoyant bands that form the star represent the virtues of faith, hope and charity.