Named after seawater, aquamarine's fresh watery hue is a cool plunge into a refreshing pool.
Blue to slightly greenish-blue variety of the mineral beryl. Crystals are sometimes big enough to cut fashioned gems of more than 100 carats. Well-formed crystals might make superb mineral specimens.
Aquamarine's name comes from the Latin for seawater and it was said to calm waves and keep sailors safe at sea. March's birthstone was also thought to enhance the happiness of marriages. The best gems combine high clarity with limpid transparency and blue to slightly greenish blue hues. Like many beryls, aquamarine forms large crystals suitable for sizable fashioned gems and carvings.
The largest gem-quality aquamarine crystal mined to date is 19 inches long.
Aquamarine is mined at high elevations in Pakistan's Karakoram Mountains.
Like emerald, aquamarine is a color variety of the mineral beryl.
Assessment of the following characteristics determines aquamarine's value.
Aquamarine's preferred color is a moderately strong dark blue to slightly greenish blue.
Most cut gems are eye-clean. Large examples are available without visible inclusions.
Because aquamarine's color is light, cutting is important and well-cut gems show brilliance.
Aquamarine crystals range from tiny to very large—some even up to 100 lbs.