Precious and Semi-Precious Gemstones

The use of stones has been around since prehistoric times, and both men and women have worn them. Beautiful stones, both rare and colorful, are typically the most prominent aspect of a piece of jewelry that has been ornamented with a metallic setting, just as they are in contemporary jewelry.

Jewelry made from gemstones is from rocks, minerals, and organic matter polished, cut and shaped into jewelry. As a result of the value disparity between precious and semi-precious stones in the 1800s, these gems were divided into two main types: precious and semi-precious stones. 

The classification is no longer necessarily valid since the “Value” component is no longer the only criterion on which specialists base their evaluation of a stone these days. It is necessary to assess the item’s quality, rarity, and provenance.

Different Types of Precious and Semi-Precious Gemstones?

Types of Precious Gemstones
Types of Precious Gemstones

Something dazzling, sparkly, and almost mystical characterizes a precious diamond. A valuable stone conjures up images of the rarest and most exquisite gem in vivid green, crimson, or blue hues every time the term is said. 

Traditionally, precious stones are classified as one of the four jewels (Emerald, Diamond ruby, and sapphire). It is possible to include jadeite, alexandrite, and pearls at times. 

This categorization, on the other hand, is not recorded. Most jewelry professionals agree that this term is outdated and urges it to be used cautiously.

Historically, the division of gems into precious and semi-precious was made during a time when advances in genetic equipment were not as advanced, and individuals recognized gemstones only by their color.

Since then, diamond has been hailed as the hardest stone on the planet, ruby as the most vibrant red, sapphire as a stunning blue, and emerald as a rich green gem, among other accolades. 

Clarity and toughness are two other traits distinguishing the Big Four from other groups. All of these stones have the potential to be exceedingly pure, with no contaminants present.

The hardness of the material is another important quality. All three minerals are found on the Mohs scale at the top of the final three levels. The hardness of emeralds ranges from 7.5 to 8. Sapphires and rubies are two types of corundum, both of which have a hardness of 9 on the Mohs hardness scale.

Diamond is unquestionably the winner. Diamond has a hardness of 10 and is often regarded as the hardest natural substance. A diamond is the only thing that can scratch other diamonds.

The primary goal of migration and war expeditions was the acquisition of these valuable stones. They are the most precious element of the monarchs’ collections since they are the rarest.

Humans have known that diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, and rubies are the rarest and most valuable gemstones for millennia, making them the most expensive. As a result, it has become second nature to separate gemstones.

What Exactly are Semi-Precious Gemstones?

Semi-Precious Gemstones
Semi-Precious Gemstones

If a stone is classified as semi-precious, it does not imply that it is not attractive or uncommon. In the jewelry industry, it’s common knowledge that semi-precious stones may be worth even more than precious stones.

Another reason why the precious/semi-precious categorization is not frequently utilized is this. Many individuals may still classify gemstones, though, and we will assist you in understanding these groupings properly.

Semi-precious stones were thought to be any gemstone other than precious stones recently (sapphire, ruby, diamond, and emerald). The most popular are tourmalines, garnets, Topazes, alexandrite, peridot, amethyst, and other gemstones. However, exercise caution, as this word is now deemed deceptive.

What Is the Best Way to Tell if a Gemstone Is Precious?

Precious Gemstones
Precious Gemstones

Gold, diamonds, and other precious stones are the most expensive natural resources. Precious stones like diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds have extremely distinct properties that collectors and jewelers highly prize.

Precious stones (such as diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires) are distinguished by their features. Diamonds have a high degree of brilliance, scintillation, and fire, whereas other gemstones have vibrant hues. 

Ruby is the color of pigeon blood, sapphire is the color of royal blue, and emerald is the color of lush green. The fact that they are all extremely hard is a common characteristic.

The most high-quality precious stones are frequently accompanied by certificates from the most reputable gemological laboratories available today, rare. The stone has previously been put through its paces by cutting-edge technology and top-tier personnel.

The extraordinary clarity, brilliant color, fiery brilliance, and capacity to defy scratching are the characteristics shared by all precious stones, regardless of their origin.

How to Determine Semi-Precious Gemstones?

If you continue to use the precious/semi-precious categorization, you will be able to distinguish one from the other clearly. Semi-precious stones were thought to be jewels other than precious gems when they were first discovered. 

They can be found in colors not often associated with valuable stones, such as purple and yellow. Semi-precious gemstones can be transparent or opaque, and they can also have visible inclusions. Natural materials such as rocks or organic materials can represent semi-precious stones.

The fundamental distinction between semi-precious and precious gemstones was the degree of transparency. Given that mineral aggregates and rocks characterize some semi-precious minerals, they may still be used for cutting, sculpting, and ornamentation, even though they are opaque or semi-transparent in appearance.

Tumbled stones like Malachite, charoite, turquoise, lapis lazuli, jasper, and many more fall under this category. The phrase “decorative stones” was sometimes used to refer to opaque materials and stones.

The hardness of gemstones is another important distinction between precious and semi-precious stones. The majority of semi-precious stones are pliable. Semi-precious stones are found throughout the Mohs scale, from the hardest to the softest.

Because of the low hardness, they can carve semi-precious stones and create cameos and table ornaments like ashtrays and vases.

Color is another characteristic that distinguishes semi-precious stones from other types of gemstones. Diamonds, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds are the only four valuable stones recognized by all classes (the others being rubies and sapphires), and each of them has its distinct hue. 

Amethyst and charoite, both purple in hue, are not included. As a result, this serves as a little tip for identification.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is Rose Quartz considered to be a semi-precious stone?

Known for its gorgeous powdery pink color, rose quartz is a famous semi-precious gemstone.

Is citrine considered to be a semi-precious stone?

Citrine is considered to be a semi-precious stone in the gemstone classification.

What gemstone is considered to be the rarest?

Musgravite. Musgravite was found in 1967 and is considered one of the world’s most valuable gemstones.

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