Donate $60 or more to AGA and recieve this Russian Alexandrites Book
by Karl Schmetzer
with contributions by George Bosshart, Marina Epelboym, Lore Kiefert & Anna-Kathrin Malsy
ISBN 978-3-510-65262-4, unpackaged weight - 1.5 lbs, approx. dimensions - 10.63" x 8.3"
Alexandrite, a variety of chrysoberyl, and one of the finest colour-change natural gemstones, may almost be called "the national gemstone of Russia." This great prestige is based on two facts: its noble name in honor of the Tsarevich Alexander Nikolaevich (the future Tsar Alexander II) and its dazzling colours, green in daylight and red in incandescent light, the military colours of Imperial Russia. Although quantities of facetable quality alexandrite are considerably less than those of emerald, alexandrite is counted among and compared to the "big four" of the gem business: diamond - ruby – sapphire – emerald.
In this book the authors present an historical overview of emerald mining in the Urals, the discovery of Russian alexandrites in the Uralian emerald mines, the naming and historical use of alexandrites and their appearance and display in mineralogical museums and the gem trade.
Morphology and twinning of rough alexandrite is described for single crystals, single contact twins and cyclic twins (trillings). Mineralogical and gemmological properties are thoroughly explained and numerous photomicrographs of inclusions and growth patterns in faceted samples are presented.
Chatoyancy and asterism of alexandrite and chrysoberyl from Russia and Sri Lanka are also described. A further chapter deals with characteristic growth patterns of Russian, other natural and synthetic alexandrites. Colorimetric data of Russian alexandrites and green chrysoberyls are explained using the CIELAB colour space, and the distinction between these varieties is explained. A chapter on trace element chemistry and locality determination rounds off the book.
An extensive appendix containing lists of historical names, a time table and numerous references provides valuable information on Russian alexandrites for all researchers in the mineralogical and gem mo logical fields as well as for gemmological laboratories, jewellers and gem dealers.
This book is illustrated with more than 200 colour figures and photographs, addresses mineralogists, gemmologists, historians, mineral and gem collectors as well as all members of the gem trade.
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The emerald mines in the Tokovaya area – a short historical overview
Discovery, naming and historical use of Russian alexandrite
- The first mineralogical descriptions of alexandrite
- Documents from the Nordenskiöld family archive and correspondence with Berzelius
- Emeralds and alexandrites from the Leuchtenberg, Koksharov and Kochubei collections
- Emeralds and alexandrites from the Leuchtenberg collection
- The largest alexandrites – samples and brief history of the Kochubei and Koksharov collections
- Kokovin’s or Kochubei’s emerald?
- The naming of alexandrite
- Developments in the late 19th century
- Alexandrite or diaphanite?
- Use and production of alexandrite
Russian alexandrites in mineralogical museums and in the trade
Morphology and twinning
- Review of the literature
- Morphology and twinning in Russian alexandrite in particular
- Single crystals
- Single contact twins
- Cyclic twins (trillings)
Mineralogical and gemmological properties
- Mineral assemblages
- Gemmological properties
- Chemical properties
- Microscopic properties
- Examination of structural properties (twinning and growth structures) in alexandrite
- Growth structures
- Mineral and fluid inclusions in faceted stones
- Mineral assemblages, growth conditions and growth sequences
Alexandrite cat’s-eyes and chrysoberyl stars
- Alexandrite cat’s-eyes from Russia
- Alexandrites from Sri Lanka with needle-like inclusions
- Asteriated chrysoberyl from Sri Lanka
Comparison of growth patterns of Russian, other natural and synthetic alexandrites
Colorimetric data of Russian alexandrite and yellowish green to green chrysoberyl
- The three-dimensional CIELAB colour space and colorimetric parameters
- Materials and methods
- Dependence of colour change on sample orientation
- Distinction of alexandrite from yellow to green colour change chrysoberyl
- Alexandrite or green chrysoberyl from India – a practical application
- Trace element chemistry and locality determination
- Origin determination in gemmology
- Principles of Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS)
- Materials and Methods
- Trace element content of Russian alexandrites and green chrysoberyls
- Separation of Russian alexandrites from other sources
Appendix, Tables 1–7, Transcription of names, Timetable, References, Index