All about tourmaline
Tourmaline belongs to the subgroup of boron-containing minerals. A huge variety of stone colors (more than 50 shades) led to the fact that some got their own name
For example, pink and red tourmaline is rubellite, a stone of blue tones is indigolite, black is sherl, colorless is achroite, etc. Tourmaline is also characterized by polychromy: there are stones that have several colors at the same time. The “cat’s eye” effect is not uncommon among tourmalines.
Some varieties belong to ornamental stones, and some to precious stones. It depends on the degree of transparency and color. The highest value among tourmalines is polychrome red-green, transparent blue, angry and crimson-red stones. In the jewellery market, cut tourmalines weighing more than 2 carats are in demand. Cut, as a rule, is used stepped or emerald, occasionally fancy, cabochons are often made from polychrome stones.
The name of tourmaline has Sinhala roots, according to some sources; this word denoted precious stones in Sri Lanka. There is also an opinion that the meaning of the name is “attracting ash”. Probably, this reflects the property of the stone to electrify under pressure, friction, and heating. In this case, the ends of the crystal are charged in the opposite way: one is positive, the other is negative.
Tourmaline deposits are quite common on the planet. Brazil, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, India, USA, Italy, Russia, Canada – the geography of tourmaline deposits is wide.
Europe recognized this stone at the beginning of the 18th century, and in Russia it became known earlier – in the 16th century. Colorful tourmalines were used to decorate the clothes of clergymen, icon frames, and used in jewellery.