If you have been marveling all these years on the rarity and incredible beauty of the diamond, you are in for a real surprise when we tell you that it isn’t nearly the rarest gem on the planet.
Of the numerous gems rarer than diamonds, the light blue jeremejevite is priced at approximately $1500 per carat. Surprised by the exorbitant price? Let’s look at what makes this gemstone such an expensive buy.
The first and most obvious factor is of course jeremejevite’s unbelievable scarcity. Only a few thousand crystals of this gem are found in the world, and even out of these not all are suitable for cutting, faceting, shaping and jewel making.
Jeremejevite was discovered in 1883 by a French mineralogist, who named it in honor of the Russian mineralogist Jeremejev.For a while it was mistaken to be an aquamarine due to its light blue hue, but soon this was clarified. Though a few samples of yellow and clear Jeremejevite have been found in the recent past, the blue jeremejevite is still the most valued – both in terms of appearance and price.
Jeremejevite belongs to class of very rarely found minerals – the borates. If it weren’t for its rarity, jeremejevite would actually be an ideal gem for jewel making – not only because of its subtle but elegant color but also of its idyllic hardness. Unfortunately such few of these gems are available in the jewel market that most jewelers don’t even try and source them, and surely most buyers haven’t even heard of these beauties.
As discussed before, jeremejevite is primarily found in a gentle watery blue which can be mistaken for low saturation sapphires or tanzanites. Other varieties such as the colorless, yellow and light purple are rare too and are often confused with white sapphires, yellow spinels and amethysts respectively. Some of these are so difficult to tell apart that refractive index measurements are used.
Jeremejevite was first discovered in Russia. Unfortunately gems found in this region are only in crystal form and cannot be faceted or cut in order to use in jewelry. Another locality where they are found widely is Germany, again these too are un-facetable and in crystal form.
The high prices of jeremejevite are greatly because of the fact that usable gems are only found in small deposits in Erongo, Namibia. Many of the world’s most impressively sized and colored jeremejevite gemstones are from this region.
The last factor effecting the cost of a jeremejevite is again closely linked to how scarce it is. Though its hardness and lack of brittleness makes it ideal to set in jewelry, in case of damage or loss of a stone it is near impossible to replace.
Yes ladies and gentlemen, it’s a gem fit for royalty and if you happen to come across one then it is a great choice of investment, but very little is known about its reaction to acids, heat and other damaging substances so make sure you keep it very safe!