Precious and semiprecious stones: characteristics of the gems

Posted by gemsngems on October 6th, 2018

The majority of precious stones or gems are minerals that have formed in the interior of the Earth. These minerals have a defined chemical composition and have an atomic arrangement. Some properties such as density and refractive index can be accurately measured and used to identify a mineral.


Precious and semiprecious stones

Gems like natural aquamarine, in general, are valued mainly because of their beauty and natural perfection. These characteristics are what determine synthetic opal quality. The properties that make a gem a beautiful stone are its colour and in some cases the peculiar shapes of its crystals.

Precious and semiprecious stones or gems have been used to decorate. They are consinder as a symbol of power and exclusivity, among others. Civilizations before us used them to worship certain deities and even to heal some diseases due to their properties.

Most semiprecious stones come from natural minerals and are characterized by their hardness (and therefore their resistance) and by the rarity, scarcity or difficulty to find them, which gives them a greater value.

Traditionally the gems were divided into two large groups, the precious stones, and the semi-precious ones.

Among the precious stones are five types called "cardinal gems".  Diamond, the Emerald, the Ruby, and the white sapphire come under this category.

Properties of gems

All gems are classified into different groups according to their properties.  So before going emerald stones for sale, you must know about their property


The carat weight of a precious stone does not necessarily correspond to its size, but to its density. Different gemstones like high quality cubic zirconia have different densities, so two gemstones of the same size can be very different in weight. The value of the gemstone is determined by its weight in carats or density, not its size.


The lustre of a precious stone refers to the quantity and quality of light reflected from its surface. It usually includes reflection, refraction, dispersion, and faceting. The true lustre of a precious loose gemstone can be less than its ideal brightness.

In the design of a piece of jewellery, brightness plays an important role - in addition to colour; Lustre can have an impact on the appearance of a piece, so it is an important factor to consider for designers.


The rarity gives the precious stone uniqueness and gives it an incomparable value by increasing the desire of people to obtain it. Rarity is one of the most decisive factors in determining the prices of precious stones. Many precious stones are very common, but their colour or exceptional clarity becomes a rare piece.


Hardness can be described as the resistance of a precious stone to abrasion. Mohs is the scale of hardness. This scale is used to measure the hardness of a precious stone.

Hard stones that can cope with everyday wear are more ideal for use in everyday jewellery. Being aware of the hardness of a gemstone can help you determine what kind of jewellery project is suitable for you.

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