|Beryl, not well known to the general public, is one of the most important gem minerals. Beryl is colorless in pure form. The many different impurities give beryl its varied coloration. Without these splendid color varieties, beryl would be a rather ordinary gemstone with only average fire and brilliance. Emerald is the green and aquamarine is the blue variety of beryl. The name beryl is used for the red and golden varieties.
Where is Beryl found?
Common Beryl Treatments
Beryl legends & lore
The greenish-yellow variety is sometimes called heliodor. The pink variety is called morganite. The colorless variety is known as goshenite. Red beryl is extremely rare and is priced accordingly. The most common beryl of gem quality is called golden beryl.
The name beryl is used for the red and golden varieties that are simply called red beryl and golden beryl. Discovered in the late 1970's and still found in gem quality at only one site in the world, the Wah-Wah Mountains of Utah, red beryl or bixbite, is one of the world's rarest gemstones.
Many different impurities give beryl its varied coloration. Cat's eye effect and asterism are occasionally displayed. Inclusions are rare for golden beryl, making it a very good value in the gems world.
Beryl is usually cut in facets to display its brilliance. You'll find a wide range of shapes and faceting styles, including portuguese cuts and checkboard cuts. Unlike emeralds, beryls are rarely given an emerald cut.
Beryl location and deposits
Golden beryls are found in Brazil, Madagascar, Namibia, Nigeria, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka. Red beryl is only found in the United States (Utah). Pink beryl, or morganite, is found in Afghanistan, Brazil, China, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and the USA (California and Utah).
Common Beryl treatments
Golden beryl is almost always untreated.
Color: Gold yellow, yellow-green, yellow, pink, colorless
Chemical composition: AI2Be3Si6O18 aluminum beryllium silicate
Crystal system: (Hexagonal), hexagonal prisms
Hardness: 7.5 - 8 (Mohs scale)
Specific gravity: 2.66 - 2.87
Refractive index: 1.562- 1.602
Birefringence: -0.004 to - -0.010
Color of streak: White
Absorption spectrum: Not diagnostic
Fluorescence: Morganite: weak, violet
The Beryl zodiac, myth & legend
Lesser or unknown gems share the same destiny: no access to fame, myth, legends or the zodiac scheme.
Precious beryl is sensitive to pressure and vulnerable to chemicals used in the household.