Thursday, February 3, 2011

Tanzanite: Rare & Beautiful

Tanzanite is the blue/purple variety of the mineral zoisite which was first discovered in the hills of northern Tanzania in 1967.  Tanzanite is noted for its remarkably strong trichroism (the property possessed by certain minerals of exhibiting three different colors when viewed from three different directions under white lights), appearing alternately sapphire blue, violet, and burgundy depending on crystal orientation.

In its rough state, tanzanite is usually a reddish brown color. It requires artificial heat treatment to 600°C in a gemological oven to bring out the blue violet of the stone.  Tanzanite is a rare gem.  A finely cut tanzanite can be more expensive than a diamond.  It is found mostly in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro. The mineral is named after Tanzania, the country where it was discovered.

It is purported that Tanzanite is a gemstone that brings visions.  It has a special ability to connect one with the spiritual world and bring that connection into one's life in the form of knowledge or manifested aims.  It is thought to bring the revelations of the gods.

Tanzanite can be used to treat and heal the skin.  It also has been helpful for re-aligning the spinal column and in awakening people from comas.  Tanzanite was recently "adopted" as an alternative birthstone for December.

I was fortunate enough to find a strand of small tanzanite chips the size I needed to make some 'blue' trees at a gem & mineral show last year.  They were much more expensive than other gemstone chip strands that I purchase but I just had to have them!  Unfortunately, the holes in half of the chips were too small to thread onto the wire I use for the tree of life pendants.  Attempting to carefully use my bead reamer to open up the holes a bit resulted in a lot of breakage.

There are a limited number of the small trees still available for $20.00 each.  Once they are gone, they're gone though.  I may not be able to find the tiny tanzanite chips again.  Contact me now to find how how one of these special tree of life pendants could be yours.

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