Zultanite
 
Relatively new to the jewelry world, Zultanite is one gemstone whose amazing natural color changing abilities makes it well suited to savvy jewelry connoisseurs.  As you watch its colors change from kiwi to champagne to raspberry, you too will be entranced by Zultanite's 100% natural beauty.  The pinnacle of exclusivity, beauty, rarity and desirability, Zultanite is a rising star in fine jewelry due to its sparklingly brilliant tranquil colors.   Like Tanzanite, Zultanite is so rare that it comes to you from only one source in the world, a remote mountain area in Anatolia, Turkey.  Named by Murat Akgun in honor of the 36 Sultans who ruled the Ottoman Empire in Anatolia in the late 13th century, Zultanite is a true Turkish delight.
 
 
A Gem That Changes Color?
 
Color changing gems show several colors when viewed under different light sources, such as sunlight and indoor light.  Astonishingly beautiful, exotic and rare, Zultanite demands a double take - its unique color change is truly that mesmerizing.
 
While some of Zultanite's key characteristics are its delicate color saturation, durability and scintillation (play of light), the beauty and intrigue of this regal gemstone ultimately lies in its different colors.   Zultanite displays a range of earthy hues and similar to the famous color changing gemstone Alexandrite, changing from kiwi greens in sunlight (candescent light) to raspberry purplish-pinks in candlelight (incandescent light).  But, unlike other color change gems such as Alexandrite, Zultanite's color change is not limited to two basic colors.   Incredibly, the same Zultanite can also exhibit khaki greens, sage greens, cognac pinks, pinkish champagnes, canary yellows, rich champagnes and gingers, depending on the light sources.   Zultanite's kiwi greens with canary flashes are noticeable under sunny skies, while traditional indoor lighting will elicit rich champagne colors.   During a candle lit dinner, the same gem reveals pink to raspberry hues.   While just wearing Zultanite unveils its breathtakingly diverse colors, one of its most unique characteristics is that unlike other color changes gems, Zultanite's best color change is not dependant on dark tones. Rather, the display of more subtle pastel contrast and complimenting earth tones (green, chocolate, mocha and gold) makes the gem more wearable.   Like all color change gemstones, the larger the Zultanite, the more visible the color change.
 
As if one phenomena was not enough, some Zultanite also possesses the coveted Cat's Eye effect.   Chatoyancy, or the Cat's Eye, effect is a reflection occurance that appears as a single bright band of light across the surface of a gemstone.   It is caused by the reflection of light in parallel inclusions.
 
The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) classifies Zultanite as a Type II transparent gemstone, meaning that it is usually eye-clean (no visible inclusions when the gem is examined approximately 6 inches from the naked eye) with some inclusions visible under 10x magnification.   Inclusions are tiny natural features that grow within the crystal during a gem's formation within the earth.    Mostly microscopic in nature, inclusions are a fascinating hallmark of authenticity, recording a gem's natural relationship with the earth.    They are also extremely useful to gemologists when identifying natural gemstones from synthetics and imitations.
 
Zultanite registers a nice hardness of 7 on the Mohs Scale, has a refractive index of 1.75 and specific gravity of 3.39.   Unless you're a gemologist, these numbers will not mean much to you, but these characteristics make Zultanite an excellent jewelry gemstone.   As a 100% natural gemstone, Zultanite is one of the few gems that have no known enhancements or treatments.
 
 
Zultanite not Diaspore
 
First faceted in around 1977 A.D., Zultanite is an extremely rare gemstone that despite its beauty and suitability for jewelry was previously plagued by scant availability.    Some jewelers previously sourced limited quantities of this gem marketed under the mineral name Diaspore, but this would be a poor representation of Zultanite.   When Diaspore is optimally cut and faceted, it will be called Zultanite.
 
Zultanite's mineral name "Diaspore", comes from the Greek word "diaspora" meaning "to scatter".  Diaspore was first discovered in 1801 A.D. in Mramorskoi, Kossoibrod, Ural Mountains, Russia, which source was depleted.  Currently, the Turkish deposit remains the world's only source of Zultanite.
 
 
Some Gemstones Are More Rare Than Others
 
By their very definition, all gemstones are rare (to be classed as a gem, a mineral or organic material used for personal adornment must be rare, beautiful and durable), but like many things, rarity is relative.   Apart from their color change and discovery in Russia's Urals (Alexandrite was discovered in Russia's Ural Mountains in 1834), Alexandrite and Zultanite's names both have royal connections; Zultanite being named in honor of Ottoman Sultans and Alexandrite being named for a Russian Tsar.   In terms of natural occurrence, Zultanite is far more rare than Alexandrite.   Zultanite is only mined in one country, while Alexandrite is currently mined in seven.
 
Although it was initially collected by mineral enthusiasts and independent miners in the mid-eighties, Zultanite is now mined commercially.   But, its rarity is not dictated exclusively by its natural scarcity and remoteness.  Zultanite tests the skills of even experienced cutters due to the difficultly in correctly orientating each crystal to accentuate its inherent color change.   With up to 98% of the crystal lost during cutting, its unbelievably low yield of 2% reinforces the exclusivity of this truly beautiful gemstone and illustrates why Zultanite is so rare, especially in sizes over 5 carats.
 
Brilliant, mesmerizing and fashionable, phenomenal Zultanite is a rare star in fine jewelry design, deserving pride of place in every serious jewelry collection.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
GB Jewelers, Inc.
Under the Clock Tower
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Warrenton, OR 97146
800-869-1481

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