The beautiful blue sapphire gem, the birthstone of September, is one of the most admired gems in the world. The name “sapphire” means “dear to the planet Saturn,” and the gem is strongly associated with that planet. Sapphire falls into the category of “precious” gems, as opposed to “semi-precious,” along with emeralds, rubies, and diamonds. This brilliant gem is mined across the world, from Madagascar to Australia.
Love of sapphires goes as far back as ancient Persian times, and they were prized by the ancient Romans as well. Ancient Persians actually believed that the brilliant blue color of the sky was caused by the reflection of sapphire gems. Thus, it’s been a symbol of the heavens, and also related motifs like purity and truth.
While deep blue is the most recognizable color for sapphires, they actually come in many different colors, including green and even pink. One of the most prized varieties of sapphire is the padparadscha, which is a beautiful orange-pink color. Depending on the rarity of the color, some sapphires are more desired and run for a higher price than others. Interestingly, sapphires and rubies are actually closely related, and are composed of the same basic corundum mineral.
“Star Sapphires” are a special formation of the gemstone that displays a six or even twelve rayed “star” on the polished gemstone. Fibers within the mineral create this interesting visual phenomenon. There’s also such thing as a color-changing sapphire gem. Essentially, while the gem is under natural light, it looks blue, but under artificial light, it displays as purple!
Throughout history, sapphires were thought to have special powers. For instance, in ancient times sapphires were considered to protect one from evil forces, and over many centuries it has had a reputation for representing faithfulness and loyalty. Sapphires were also well-known as a symbol of royalty, and they were set into the crowns and adornments of many kings and other members of high nobility.
Sapphire is also a prominent symbol of romance, even up until the present day. The famous Princess Diana received a sapphire engagement ring from Prince Charles, so we can see its huge influence on royalty and romance. If you’re in the market for an engagement ring or another romantic piece, be sure to consider jewelry with this spectacular gem.