In recent weeks, whether you turned on the TV, read the newspaper or surfed the net, there has been a sea of reports, statistics and other information about Brazil – albeit not always positive. One of the most beautiful aspects of Brazil has been however overlooked, Brazil’s gemstone riches! The games in Rio has been a good start to our acquaintance with Brazil, we now reveal another missing piece to the puzzle of this amazing country. Below I will take look at Brazilian cities, with their respective states, in terms of their gemstone riches!
Porto Alegre / Rio Grande do Sul
The southernmost state of Brazil is especially rich in representatives of the quartz family. Many fine amethyst druze clusters can be found here. It should not be surprising as the famous Uruguay amethysts are found not far from here.
The wonderful Mandarin Citrine with its fresh, cheerful citrus notes comes from Ametista do Sul. The city, who’s name translates into “Amethysts of the South”, is home to approximately 10,000 inhabitants. The name of the city comes from the abundant gemstone deposits, making Amestisa do Sul the world capital of Aamethysts. Citrine and Amethysts are gems which are both coloured by iron. Blue Moon Quartz, available at Rocks & Co, is from the state of Rio Grande do Sul , “Great River of the South”, from the Uruguaiana municipality, bordering Uruguay and Argentina.
Salvador / Bahia
In the federal state of Bahia we can find wonderful gems such as Emeralds. In a small area which lies between the cities of Xique-Xique and Remanso, runs the river São Francisco. This river is where our Bahia Emeralds, famous for their forest-green fire, come from. Emeralds have been mined in Bahia since 1964, however at Rocks & Co we are not always satisfied with the quality made available on the market. Only recently through direct contact with an astute gemstone expert and landowner, did we win access to the wonderful Emeralds of this region.
Our Brejinho Amethysts come from the Brejinho mine in the Espinhaso Mountains, which differ from the Amethysts from Rio Grande do Sul, in that they have a darker tone with distinguishing flashes of pink. Apatite can also be found in Bahia, specifically King Blue Apatite is found in the area around Campo Formosa and Neon Blue Apatite in Água Branca. Colour change Fluorite, with its striking optical phenomenon that can be enjoyed when the gemstone is viewed in different lights, also comes from Bahia.
Manaus / Amazonas
Amazon Beryl comes from the state of Amazonas, in the region of the Solimões River. Deep in the heart of the Amazon region, where the rivers Solimões and Negro flow together, this delicate green variety of beryl family were formed, marrying the transparency and clarity of an Aquamarine with the tender green of an Emerald.
Belo Horizonte / Minas Gerais
Minas Gerais is THE Brazilian state when it comes to precious stones. The name “Minas Gerais” means “General Mines” in Portuguese.
Rocks and Co. offers many gemstone varieties from this region including many Quartz varieties, Sphene, Aquamarine, Emeralds, Garnets and Tourmalines.
The Nova Era Emerald with its fine, intense green comes from the Capoeirana mine in the region Itabira / Nova Era. Also found in this region is a very well-known and highly sought after representative of the beryl family, Santa Maria Aquamarine. This stone was first discovered in the Santa Maria de Itabira mine, however only very few pieces are found there today. With the exception of some localities in Africa; Brazil is and remains the primary source.
The Boca Rica Aquamarine, from the Divino das Laranjeiras municipality, has a pastel-blue that can show tender greens and has an incredible transparency and brilliance. Interestingly, we get our “green gold” Ouro Verde Quartz from the same mine – which is also called the Boca Rica mine – the name is really fitting! It has vivid yellow-green hues which are reminiscent of shimmering gold. This colour is unique to this Brazilian mine in the state of Minas Gerais!
Other gemstones worth mentioning from this area are the Angelandia Rose Quartz and the Rose Quartz, both coming out of the Montezuma Mine. Angelandia is a small town near Teófilo Otoni.
Capelinha Sphene, Imperial Minas Grenade, Mutuca-Indigolithe and Morro Redondo-Fuchsia Tourmalines are also mined in Minas Gerais.
Brazil / Goias
Madeira Citrine, which owes its name to the wine of the same name due to its similarity in colour, comes from the State of Goias. Goias is located in the center of Brazil, near to the countries capital, Brasilia. The Palmeiras mine in Serra Grande is famous for red-orange, honey and mandarin coloured Citrine.
Recife and Natal
When reporting on Brazilian gemstones, we must not overlook the legendary Brazilian Paraíba Tourmaline! Mined in Paraíba, which is between Recife and Natal!