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Unveiling the Enigmatic Gem's History, Myths, Symbolism, and properties

The Beloved Sapphire

Sapphire has long been cherished for its beauty and cultural significance. In addition to its intriguing history, myths, and symbolism, sapphire possesses unique physical properties that contribute to its allure. This article will explore the hardness and physical properties of sapphire, as well as provide guidance on how to distinguish between real and fake sapphires.

A Glimpse into History

Sapphire has a storied past dating back thousands of years. It was first discovered in ancient civilizations such as Egypt and Mesopotamia, where it was considered a symbol of power and protection. The Greeks believed that sapphire had the ability to ward off evil spirits, while the Romans associated it with wisdom and faithfulness. Throughout the Middle Ages, sapphire was highly coveted by royalty and clergy, with the belief that it bestowed divine blessings.

Myths and Legends

In many cultures, sapphire has been associated with various myths and legends. In ancient Persia, it was believed that the Earth rested on a giant sapphire, giving the sky its blue colour. Hindu mythology tells the tale of the "Kalpavriksha," a divine tree with leaves made of sapphire, believed to grant wishes. In medieval Europe, sapphire was thought to protect its wearer from poisoning and evil spells.

Hardness and Physical Properties

Sapphire, a variety of the mineral corundum, is renowned for its exceptional hardness. On the Mohs scale, which measures a gemstone's resistance to scratching, sapphire ranks 9 out of 10, just below diamonds. This remarkable hardness makes sapphires suitable for everyday wear and ensures their longevity.

In terms of physical properties, sapphire exhibits a vitreous (glass-like) lustre when polished, enhancing its brilliance and shine. It has a specific gravity typically ranging from 3.95 to 4.03, making it denser than most other gemstones. Additionally, sapphires have a refractive index of approximately 1.76 to 1.77, which contributes to their ability to reflect and refract light, resulting in their vibrant and captivating colours.

The Meanings and Properties of Sapphire

The unique properties of sapphires extend beyond their physical durability. They are believed to possess metaphysical qualities such as enhancing intuition, promoting mental clarity, and balancing emotions. Some also attribute healing properties to sapphire, claiming that it can alleviate ailments related to the eyes, throat, and nervous system.


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Sapphire Symbolism

Sapphire is renowned for its blue hue, but it can also be found in a spectrum of other colors, including yellow, pink, purple, and green. Each color variation holds its own unique meaning and properties.

The most famous and prized colour, blue sapphire symbolizes wisdom, loyalty, and nobility. It is believed to enhance mental clarity and intuition, promoting a sense of calmness and serenity.

Often associated with prosperity and success, yellow sapphire is believed to attract abundance and bring joy into one's life. It is also considered a stone of wisdom and intellect.

Pink sapphire is associated with love, romance, and emotional healing. It is believed to enhance feelings of compassion and empathy, fostering harmonious relationships.

Symbolizing spiritual enlightenment and intuition, purple sapphire is often associated with mysticism and higher consciousness. It is said to enhance one's spiritual connection and facilitate meditation.

Green sapphire represents fertility, abundance, and growth. It is believed to bring harmony and balance to the wearer's life, fostering a sense of renewal and rejuvenation.

Padparadscha sapphire, a rare and exquisite gemstone, embodies the essence of love and wisdom. Its delicate pink-orange hue symbolises harmony, passion, and intuition, making it a stone of balance and emotional healing. With its unique blend of colours, padparadscha sapphire whispers stories of romance, creativity, and inner strength, captivating hearts and inspiring dreams

Distinguishing Real from Fake Sapphires

Determining the authenticity of a sapphire can be a challenge, especially with the prevalence of synthetic and imitation gemstones in the market. Here are some key factors to consider when evaluating the authenticity of a sapphire:

Colour: Genuine sapphires come in a variety of colours, but they should exhibit a consistent and vibrant hue. Be cautious of sapphires that display unnatural or overly saturated colours.

Clarity: Natural sapphires often have inclusions or imperfections. However, synthetic or imitation sapphires may appear too perfect and lack any visible flaws. A genuine sapphire's clarity can range from eye-clean to heavily included.

Hardness: One way to test a sapphire's authenticity is to check its hardness. As mentioned earlier, sapphire is exceptionally hard, so it should not be easily scratched. You can try scratching the gemstone with a material of lower hardness, such as glass or quartz. If the sapphire remains unscathed, it is likely authentic.

Weight and Density: Genuine sapphires have a specific gravity ranging from 3.95 to 4.03. You can compare the weight of the gemstone to its expected density using a gemological scale or consult with a professional gemologist.

Refractive Index: While determining the refractive index requires specialized equipment, it can be a useful method to differentiate between real and fake sapphires. A gemologist can measure the refractive index and compare it to known values for sapphire.

Certification: To ensure the authenticity of a sapphire, consider purchasing from reputable sources that provide gemological certifications. These certifications, issued by recognized gemological laboratories, guarantee the gemstone's authenticity and provide detailed information about its characteristics.

Sapphire's hardness and physical properties contribute to its durability and brilliance. Understanding these properties allows for a better appreciation of this enchanting gemstone. When it comes to identifying real sapphires, considering factors such as color, clarity, hardness, and certifications can help distinguish between genuine and imitation stones. By being informed and seeking professional guidance, you can confidently explore the world of sapphires and acquire a truly authentic and valuable gem.