Sapphire is both the birthstone of September and the gem designated for 5th and 45th wedding anniversaries. The word “sapphire” means “clear thinking” but it can also be translated to “dear to planet Saturn” in some languages. Some claim that name sapphire is derived from a combination of the Latin word “saphirus” and the Greek word “sapheiros,” both meaning blue. Others believe that it originated from its association with the planet Saturn. Either way, the deep blue color has been believed to hold the power of the sea, and has even been said to make peace over warring parties.
A member of the corundum family of minerals, Sapphire is a very unique gemstone with a wide array of applications. As one of the hardest minerals, they are very durable they have been in demand since ancient times. Though it is commonly used as jewelry, it can also be used for everything from infrared optical components and crystals to knife blades and windows. Blue Sapphires have always been thought to have a calming influence which has made it lasting symbol for loyalty and trust, for this reason many women around the world choose the blue sapphire gemstone for their engagement ring.
Sapphires are rated excellent for everyday wear. You should avoid exposure to heat and contact with chemicals. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water, or clean in an at-home ultrasonic unit.
Sapphire can be found naturally in mines. For example, a huge deposit of the stone was found in the small village of Ilakaka, Madagascar in 1998. Madagascar now accounts for about 50% of the world’s sapphire. Major sources for sapphires are: Australia, Cambodia, East Africa, Kashmir, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, India and the US.
Sapphire has a rich and revered history. Legend holds that the words of The 10 Commandments were written on a tablet made out of sapphire. As you embark on your journey to find the perfect Sapphire, keep this in mind – you’re getting more than just a gemstone, you’re starting your own legend.