As documented in the Rocks & Co. Gemstone library, Sapphires along with Rubies belong to the corundum family and can be counted, in history and over a period of almost 3000 years, among the most sought-after precious stones in the world.
Sapphire has always fascinated experts and lovers of precious stones: it is no coincidence that it belongs to the top-four and is considered a classic gem, alongside Diamond, Emerald and Ruby. And it is not by chance that it is often identified as the stone chosen to seal promises of love. As many of know, the royal family made Sapphire the engagement gemstone of choice, of course with the ring of Princess Diana which was years later gifted to the Duchess of Cambridge. This is a stunning ring featuring a 12-carat oval cut, blue Sapphire surrounded by a crown of 14 solitaires worth 28,000 pounds.
The gem’s history is steeped in myths and legends so much so, that the Sapphire is also called the “Stone of the Gods” or indicated as a sacred stone. The Bible refers to Sapphire several times as a virtuous gemstone. The name comes from the Latin “sapphirus” which means “blue” and in fact, when you think of Sapphire, you have the instinct to think of the blue stones. However, there is much more to Sapphire than the wonderful blues.
There are Sapphires of various types and especially of different colours, shades and nuances. But in this article, we will focus on the White Sapphire.
This variety of Sapphire is also called Leuco Sapphire, which comes from the Greek leykós–white. Its transparency and its colourless appearance are due to the absence of foreign colouring elements. The colouring process of a natural mineral depends on the presence of foreign elements such as iron, chrome or aluminium within the structure of the stone. The hardness corresponds to 9 on the Mohs scale. It is often cut into a brilliant, and its value increases with the carat. The higher the carat weight of the stone, the higher it’s value.
History of the White Sapphire
The discovery of White Sapphire dates back to ancient Greece. The Ancient Greeks discovered white sapphire on the island of Naxos and associated it with Apollo, god of light and sun. Since Apollo was also the god of prophecies, according to legend white Sapphires were offered as a gift to Pythia the priestess of prophecies.
The white Sapphire releases a cold, silvery light and is a coveted gem for the creation of jewellery: it is often also considered as an alternative to diamond. The finest quality white Sapphires are the closest to colourless ones.