Everything you need to know about sapphires! September's beautiful birthstone.
We hope you all had a fun and safe Labor Day weekend. September is here. Children are going back to school. Some of the leaves are already changing color and falling. I sincerely hope you all have great memories of the summer of 2019. I know I do.The word September stems from the Latin word (septem) meaning seven. I know. I know. Why seven when it’s the ninth month? Because September was the seventh month on the old Roman republic’s calendar. September is a big month for birthdays!
Happiest of birthdays to everyone born in September! You are in great company with celebrities like Dr. Phil, Keanu Reeves, Beyoncé, and Bruce Springsteen, and Queen Elizabeth I, the first Queen of England. And Thomas Edison, and invented his own electric lamp. Everyone born in September share more than the month of their birth.
They also share our favorite birthstone: Sapphire.
Before I get to the actual stone however, I thought you might want to know how we came to relate one particular stone to each month in the first place. According to the American Gem Society the idea stems from the biblical breastplate of Aaron which was set with twelve precious stones. The twelve stones represented the twelve tribes of Israel. Later, about 100 A.D., the
breastplate was studied and cataloged by the Roman scholar Titus Flavius Josephus, and it was he who created the first list of birthstones. And now you know.
Name & Hardness
Sapphire, the word, comes from the Greek word Sappheiros, or maybe the Latin Sapphirus. In either case both of these ancient words most likely referred to a totally different blue stone, most likely Lapis Lazuli. Go figure! Today the word sapphire refers to a precious gemstone, second only to diamond in hardness, and the third hardest known mineral rating 9.0 on the Mohs scale. While we typically think of sapphire as a dark blue translucent faceted stone, it can be found in many other colors including pink, grey, black and even colorless.
Sapphire is a variety of the mineral Corundum with trace amounts of the elements which help determine its color. The word Sapphire is used to describe all colors of the mineral Corundum except one. All of the red hued Corundum are called Rubies. Who knew? The deep blue I think of when I think of Sapphire occurs when there is just the right mix of Iron and Titanium in the Corundum.
As mentioned above sapphires are some of the most durable stones out there and is great for daily wear! Ultrasonic/steam cleaners are safe when it comes to sapphire jewelry. Though we do not recommend cleaning sterling silver jewelry with ultrasonic cleaners. The sapphire stone is scratch resistant and white sapphires are used on higher end watch faces, so the watch face remain shiny and clear. And sapphires are really great from a daily wear, durability, color and cost stand point.
Color & Clarity
When it comes to purchasing sapphires, color is the most important. Some of the most prized sapphires have color hues that should have a strong vivid to deep blue pigmentation(almost like it's lit within), with no inclusions within the stone. While most sapphires tend to have less inclusions compared to other stones, the un-included stones are still amazingly prized.