Some stones which we refer as ‘Gemstones’ were once living organisms or were formed by living organisms. In other words, Organic gemstones are gems that are derived from animals, plants or other organisms while they are living or after they die and the usually do not have cleavage as do rock gemstones.
There are several types of Organic Gemstones used to make Gemstone Jewelry. The gems in this category are pearl, amber, coral, ivory, ammolite, shell and jet.However, the most popular among these stones is Pearl. Red Coral is also a popular choice of many.
Given below are the types and details of these Organic Stones.Click on the links below to know more about these Stones.
Types of Organic Gemstones
Amber is the fossilized resin of a tree. The color of Amber varies from transparent to semitransparent and generally from light yellow to dark brown, but can be orange, red, whitish, greenish-brown, blue, or violet. This stone resembles and is named after ambergris, a sweet smelling secretion of the sperm whale once used in perfume making. Amber has a hardness of 2-2.5 Mohs scale. Amber was the much preferred jewelry of Victorian era. This gemstone is considered as a good luck stone. Read More about Amber
Jet is a shiny black stone and is formed from the remains of wood in a similar process by which coal is made. Jet is also called lignite. This stone has a hardness of 2.5-4 Mohs scale. This stone became extremely popular as mourning jewelry after Queen Victoria wore it on the death of her husband Prince Albert in 1861. This stone is considered as a gem for spiritual enlightenment. Read More about Jet Gemstone
Ammolite is the fossilized remains of ancient sea anemones. Ammolite is similar to the opal in appearance and often has a cracked or mottled surface. This cracking can give the stone the look of 'dragon scales' or a stained glass window.
Pearl is considered the king of all organic gems and is formed inside the shells of oysters and mussels. Pearl has a hardness of 2.5-4.5 in the Mohs scale. Natural pearls come in various shapes: round, pear, drop, egg, and others. They also come in various colors, such as white, cream, light rose, cream rose, black, gray, bronze, blue, dark blue, blue green, red, purple, yellow, and violet. Pearl Jewelry is considered as the Symbol of Beauty and Elegance and was part of the royal jewelry. Read More about Pearls
Usually the elephant’s tusk is referred to Ivory but these days’ teeth of hippopotamus, walrus, wild boar and some other mammals also serve as ivory. Ivory jewelry was popular during the Victorian period. Since many animals that have ivory tusk were killed to get their tusk the import and sale of ivory is strictly banned in many countries of the world.
Coral is the skeletal remains of marine animals. Coral has a hardness of 2.6 to 2.7 in the Mohs scale and is found in semi translucent to opaque and occurs in white, pink, orange, red, blue, violet, golden, and black. Coral is used to make figurines, cameos, carvings and beads. Read More about Coral Gem.
© 2009 Anamika S Jain