Where Sapphires are found
Sapphires share the “Big 3 Colored Gemstones” title with its fellow ruby and emerald members. This rich blue hue stones have captivated our hearts for millenniums and are prized for its many mystical associations. They have decorated the robes of clergy members and royalty for centuries and by default, showcasing its high-class status. Sometimes referred to as the “Stones of Destiny”, sapphires are the physical embodiment of destiny, faith, and hope.
When Prince Charles gave Princess Diana a blue sapphire engagement ring, the story of sapphire, romance, and the English royal family became forever sealed. History repeated itself in 2011 when Prince William proposed to his wife Kate Middleton with an 18-carat oval blue sapphire ring. It appears as if the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
Sapphires are precious gemstones consisting of aluminum oxide that belong to the corundum family famous for their blue color. The sapphire’s name is derived from the Greek word “sappheiros” meaning blue. Pure corundum is colourless and henceforth the blue can be explained by traces of iron and titanium. They are normally blue but “fancy sapphires” can appear yellow, purple, orange and green. The only colour that isn’t a part of fancy sapphires is red because it would be known as a ruby.
Throughout world history, the sapphire has been connected with the divine because of its supposed ability to provide clarity and wisdom to those who hold this gem. In ancient Greece, the gem was associated with Apollo the god of music, clairvoyance and prophecy. Anyone that wanted to visit the notorious Oracle of Delphi would also have to wear a sapphire. It was believed that the sapphire would help the Oracle’s vision.
The arch nemesis of the ancient Greeks – The ancient Persians – called a sapphire gemstone “Lazvard”, literally translating to “that has the color of the sky”. They believed that the earth was leaning on a huge sapphire, therefore explaining the blue colored sky. Heaven to the ancient Persians as early as 800BC was a sapphire.
In Hinduism, the deep digging roots of the wish-fulfilling Kalpa tree were made out of sapphire, ready to give the wisdom of the earth to those who crave it.
During the early days of the Christian Church, a Bishop could wear whatever ring made out of whatever metal or stone he wanted. Pope Innocent III made a decree in the 12th century.