The beauty of the topaz has been admired for centuries. Although the most commonly found color is yellow; this gorgeous gemstone also comes in shades of golden-brown, blue, light blue, red, pink, colorless and green. It is a very hard gemstone, ranking an 8 on the Moh’s scale of hardness and making it a perfect gemstone for everyday wear.
One of the largest deposits of topaz can be found in a large German rock called the Schneckenstein in Saxony. It was first uncovered in the 18th century and was mined there for over 60 years. Although this deposit unearthed a plentiful amount of topaz, the actual topaz crystals were relatively small. Miners that were searching for the topaz had to travel to Siberia or Brazil to find crystals the size of a human fist. Topaz can also be found in the United States, Mexico, Italy, Sweden, Czech Republic, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Russia and Japan. Historians believe that the topaz has been around for at least 2,000 years and is believed to be a part of the twelve gates to the Holy City of the New Jerusalem. The beautiful gates were said to protect those inside against enemies. For centuries, gemstones have always been attributed with having mystical powers. The ancient Egyptians believed that the topaz received its illustrious color from the glow of the sun god Ra; thus giving the gemstone the power to protect his believers from danger. Coincidentally, the Romans dedicated the topaz to Jupiter, the god of the sun. The golden color reminds many cultures of the powerful sun’s warm rays. The topaz is believed to have a soothing effect on its wearer and is said to dispel anger and ward off nightmares. Many cultures believed that the topaz had the power to change its color to alert its wearer of poison and danger. The ancient Greeks believed that the topaz could make its wearer invisible during times of emergency.
The effects of the topaz are believed to beneficial to the physical body as well as the mental and emotional states. Many ancient cultures believed that the topaz has mystical powers of disorders of the skin and healing wounds. It has even been said to have been used in treatments for the loss of the sense of taste. One thing that is common across cultures and time is the use of ground topaz to be mixed in an elixir to provide energy that is surged throughout the body. The ancient cultures believed that if you thought about your desired state before you drank the elixir, the topaz would help you achieve that state of physical and mental being. Pure yellow topaz is often used by crystal healers to treat disorders of the liver, endocrine glands and gall bladder. There is no doubt that this is one of the few gemstones that, because of its association with the sun, have been attributed with a myriad of incredible powers that rejuvenate the body.
One of the most spectacular specimens of topaz is known as the Braganza. This mesmerizing gemstone is the centerpiece of the Portuguese Crown and weighs 1680 carats, for centuries it was believed to be a diamond. The topaz occasionally grows in extremely large crystals; the largest ever found is a massive 597 pounds. The topaz actually holds the record for the largest faceted gemstone, weighing in at whopping 36, 854 carats. One of the rarest forms of topaz comes in a pale pink hue. This pink topaz has only been found in Pakistan and Russia. When the pink topaz was first discovered in Russia, ownership was restricted to the Czar and his family or anyone he gave it to as a gift. To this day, this exquisitely colored topaz is known as imperial topaz. In Brazil, miners have also referred to many yellow colored gems as topazio; however, only true topaz can be called topazio imperiale. Other shades ranging from orange to yellow-brown are known as “precious topaz” in Brazil in Sri Lanka. In a large part of the global market, the popularity of the topaz has waned due to the emergence of citrine gemstone. The citrine is often marketed as golden topaz. Some varieties of quartz that display a yellow hue are being sold as quartz topaz. When selling topaz gemstones today, many jewelers include papers that let the buyer know the topaz is pure.
It has been called earthy and sophisticated; the topaz is a relatively affordable stone that adds illustrious color to jewelry designs. Although the most popular shade can be considered an earth tone, this dazzling gemstone comes in a kaleidoscope of wonderful colors. Most of the topaz on the marketplace is known as precious topaz is often found in a rectangular, scissors, oval, cushion or emerald-cut. It’s a durable gemstone whose colors radiate beautifully through any design. If you are looking for a relatively affordable gemstone that is breathtakingly beautiful, easy to care for and is surrounded in an aura of mystery; then the tantalizing topaz is definitely for you.