Ametrine, aka Trystine or the trade name Bolivianite, is a naturally occurring variety of Quartz crystal.   It is a mixture of Amethyst and Citrine with zones of purple and yellow or orange.   Almost all commercially available Ametrine is mined in Bolivia, although there are deposits being exploited in Brazil and India.
The color of the zones visible within Ametrine are due to differing oxidation states of iron within the crystal.   The different oxidation states occur due to temperature gradients across the crystal during its formation.
Legend has it that Ametrine was first introduced to Europe by a conquistador as a "Thank you" to the Spanish Queen, after he received a mine in Bolivia as a dowry when he married a princess from the native Ayoreos tribe.
Artificial Ametrine can be created by heat treating an Amethyst crystal.
Most lesser priced Ametrine can be assumed to be synthetic.   In 1994 A.D. a Russian laboratory perfected the production of bicolored Quartz crystals that are irradiated to bring out the typical Ametrine colors.   Natural Ametrine does not come in Green-yellow or golden-blue.
Ametrine is most typically faceted in a rectangular shape with a 50/50 pairing of Amethyst and Citrine.   Sometimes a checkerboard pattern of facets is added to the top to increase light reflection. Ametrine can also be cut to blend the two colors so that the result is a mixture of yellow, purple and peach tones throughout the stone.   Ametrine is also popular among artistic cutters and carvers, who play with the colors, creating landscapes in the stone.
Ametrine is a very durable gemstone suited to a variety of jewelry uses.   Most sizes and shapes are available but the color contrast is most pronounced in sizes over seven carats.
GB Jewelers, Inc.
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