Everybody's heard of it, but what is turquoise?
Apart from being a unique, prized, semi-precious gemstone, turquoise has a long and glorious history having being worn by all the ancient civilisations.
Turquoise is a mineral - hydrated phosphate of copper and aluminium - and gets its colour from the copper and iron content. It varies in colour from yellow through bright blue to blue green to green and brown. The stones used in turquoise jewellery are in the blue to green spectrum. Natural turquoise is not purple even though there are examples of purple turquoise jewellery on the market today. This is a dyed stone and not necessarily dyed turquoise.
Every piece of natural turquoise is unique and the examples from Nepal and Tibet are sought after for the unique and often dramatic veining matrix and variety of colour. Turquoise from these regions is available in large pieces. Iranian turquoise is prized for its even, bright blue and turquoise colour often completely clear of veining. Turquoise is also mined in America and has been worn as jewellery by the Native American Indians for centuries.
The Ancient Egyptians loved turquoise using it extensively in jewellery and to adorn battle dress. Worn by both sexes, turquoise was often mixed with lapis lazuli.
For more information about this much loved gemstone read About Gemstones and don't miss our comprehensive collection of turquoise jewellery - our turquoise pendant collection is renowned for its variety, authenticity and value.