UNIQUE GEM TREASURES FROM SOUTH AFRICA
Apart from diamonds, gold and platinum – the obvious big three South Africa has many gemstones found only here. One wonders how many locals are aware of this and why these unique treasures are not promoted with more pride to our overseas visitors. After all, what better way to remember a country than to own or present as a gift, something unique that cannot be found elsewhere. Here is a list of gems unique to Southern Africa.
Tiger’s Eye: A silicified form of blue asbestos from the Northern Cape. When polished the gem has a silky lustre with yellow and dark brown bands which reverse in colour as the gem is turned. When yellow tiger’s eye is heated it turns red, known as Bulls Eye‚ and when blueish grey it is called Hawk’s Eye‚. It is polished into beads, buttons and ornaments and
very good value for money.
Royal Lavulite: Also known as Sugulite, it is found only in the manganese mines near Hotazel in the Northern Cape. It is an opaque material with a striking purple colour and is often used as carvings, beads and cabochons. It was discovered in the 1980Р’s and
became very popular in the USA.
Blue Lace Agate: A wavey banded dark and light blue agate that comes only from Namaqualand and the southern parts of Namibia. Declared as the official gem of the World Water Council it is fashioned into beads and cabochons and is
used to craft the most beautiful jewellery.
As with some of our other posts we do, we will be looking at more and more stones as well (in addition to diamonds, tanzanite and other gems found across the globe), under our general theme of what it is that makes South Africa unique. Please check in for more information on some truly unique,
South African gems!