Russian Gemstones Encyclopedia

Vladimir Bukanov. Russian Gemstones Encyclopedia



BERYL (Beryll—Béryl—Ѕерилл) (Pliny, 77), from anc. Hindu. “stone, which glistens”, Gk. “berullos”, Lat. “beryllus” and Fr. briller – glisten, from the same word. Aquamarine – from Lat. “aqua” – water and “mare” – sea, according the color. Heliodor, according the name of the Gk. god of the Sun – Helios and “doron” – “gift” in Gk. Vorobeyevite – after Russ. mineralogist V.I. Vorobeyev (1875-1906). In 1911, D. Kunz called the same kind morganite in the U.S.A. – after J.P. Morgan. Goshenite – named after locality near Goshen, Massachusetts, the U.S.A. Rosterite –in the name of the researcher G. Roster. Bazzite – after Alessandro E. Bazzi, Ital. engineer, who found the first specimen. Bixbite – after Amer. mineralogistM. Bixby, but this name is not recommended because of the existence of another mineral with the similar name bixbyite. Pezzottaite, after F.C. Pezzotta the curator of a museum in Milan, Italy.

Composition & Properties. Silicate – Al2Be3 [Si6O18], hexagonal system. Admixtures → color: chromium (Cr3+) – green emerald; vanadium (V3+) – green vanadium beryl; iron (Fe2+ or Fe3+) – green noble beryl; iron (Fe2+ /Fe3+) – blue aquamarine; iron (Fe3+ or Fe2+) – yellow-green heliodor; iron (Fe3+)– gold beryl; manganese (Mn3+) – Bixbite-red beryl; manganese (Mn2+), cesium and lithium – rose vorobeyevite. Bazzite – scandium beryl composition Be3(Sc,Al)2Si6O18 Pezzottaite – Cs(Be2Li)Al2Si6O18 Hardness 7.5-8.0. Density 2.6-2.9. Cleavage indistinct. Fragile. Glass luster. Stable in acids except a hydrofluoric acid. Beryl is widespread, there are many color varieties. Among them emerald is the most popular, it is described separately. Also there are following varieties.

Noble beryl or precious beryl – different tones of green, unlike green emerald it has no admixture of chromium. Usually it is found in the form of long-columnar crystals, sometimes their radial-rays aggregates make beryl sun. Dissolution of crystal edges leads to creating of exquisite forms. Green color of noble beryl has blue, yellow and brown tones according the composition and the form of inclusion of iron, which gives the possibility to differentiate some varieties of color. For example, apple green to brown-green geshenite. Aquamarine – bright blue, bluish-green and greenish-blue variety. Sometimes its color is unstable and it loses color in the sunrays. Usually there are long-columnar crystals. Bazzite – a rare scandium analogue of beryl, pale blue color, usually it exists as fine prismatic crystals. It has no commercial importance. Black beryl – a rare variety of gem-quality, which is known at the deposits of Mozambique and Madagascar. Blue beryl – thick blue to indigo blue. Its color depends on admixture of ions of (NO3). It was found at the Maxixe mine in Brazil in 1917 and named after the place Maxixe beryl and Maxixe aquamarine. Since 1970s, it has been widely available. The characteristic feature of blue beryl is rather unstable in sunlight color, which depends on admixture of boron. In the sunlight it becomes brown-yellow. The similar unstable in color is Halbanita aquamarine, which was called according the place of finding – the Habachtal deposit, Austria, in 1988. Its color depends on admixture of ions in molecular form, as free radicals CO32- or HCO3 - , which are destructed in the sunlight, composing the chromophore center CO3 - , that’s why it is called Maxixe type beryl. Bixbite – reddish-orange variety, it is close to vorobeyevite in color. But it is typical for it to have gooseberry tone of red color, also there is 4-5 times less cesium and lithium in its composition, its color is stable under annealing to 1000°C and irradiation. Size of bixbite crystals are not longer than 5 cm., they are transparent very rare. Goshenite – colorless, rarely – carnation-pink, it exists in prismatic columnar crystals. Colorless goshenite without admixture of iron has no color under annealing and irradiation, too. Heliodor – yellow to lemon yellow variety of beryl, and golden-yellow variety from Namibia has the trade name golden beryl. Bazzite – scandium a version of beryl in the form of blue crystals prismatic to acicular shape. Pezzottaite (F.C. Hawthorne et. al., 2003) Cesium-lithium beryl in tabular crystals to 8 cm deep purplish red, transparent to translucent. Rosterite – pale pink to colorless. Its characteristic feature is a plate shape of crystals and high levels of admixtures of sodium and lithium. Because it is very rare, it has no commercial importance. Vorobeyevite – rose-red variety of beryl. It was described at first in the Urals, Russia, in 1908, as short-columnar crystals. About the same time it was found on Madagascar and in the U.S.A., it was called morganite. This name is used mainly in the foreign gemology, but honestly it should be called vorobeyevite. Its composition is characterized with admixtures of alkali metals – cesium and litium. Color is stable; it depends on the admixture of manganese. Other varieties of beryl are rare.

Color and optical effects. Color of usual beryl depends on admixture of iron. In the sunlight it is lost in some varieties of the stone. Usually color is evenly distributed, sometimes distribution is in zones. Rather often differently colored crystals of beryl exist together. Distribution in zones can be of three types: parallel to vertical or horizontal edges or mixed. Color can be lost in the sunlight and under annealing, but it can be restored with irradiation. Beryl has pleochroism; especially in intensively light blue and dark blue crystals. Along the main axis blue beryl, unlike aquamarine, is colored more brightly, and it should be taken into account in the process of cut. Heliodor has only weak pleochroism – from greenish to golden-yellow; vorobeyevite has clear pleochroism —from pale rose to purple; green beryl also has clear pleochroism – from yellow to bluish-green. Colorless beryl from Brazil after cutting receives bright Play of color, which gives an effect of fire because of light interference.

Mineral admixtures in beryl, inclusions of ilmenite among them, have an impact at the character of color and such effects as asterism. Even oriented yellow-brown plates of goethite lead in cabochons to an effect of cat’s-eye and aventurescence. In pale blue and pink beryl from Norway scales of hematite lead to the brightest aventurescence. Color of black beryl depends on the abundance of micro inclusions of black spinel, which are disposed along the planes perpendicular to the longitude of a crystal. That’s why beryl is non-transparent in the direction of the main axis, but it is grayish near to colorless on the angle to the axis. Black color is observed only in the central part of crystals, and outer zones, to 5 cm. deep, are represented with blue aquamarine changing its color gradually from white in non-transparent zones at the border of black beryl. For black beryl it is typical to have clear differences according planes, full of inclusions, and silver glistening. Jointly it gives some optical effects: asterism, aventurescence and cat’s-eye. These effects produce the original play of light in black beryl after cabochon cutting.

Deposits. Beryl is formed in magmatic, pegmatites, greisens, and hydrothermal veins. The most rare are deposits of volcanic origin with beryl in the geodes in rhyolites. Deposits of bixbite or red beryl are of this type. Magmatic type is represented with widely disposed insets and schlieren accumulations of beryl in garnet, as well as in miarolitic pegmatites. The most widespread are deposits of late-magmatic type connected with granite pegmatites and greisens. Hydrothermal metamorphic type of deposits, where emerald is found sometimes, is linked mainly with schist layers and carbonates rocks. Alpine veins, in which there are no industrial quantities of beryl, are of the same type; there high-quality collection material can be found. Very productive beryl deposits are alluvial fields.

In Russia gem-quality beryl is found in the Middle Urals, at the deposits of the Alabash-Murzinka zone of pegmatites to the north of Yekaterinburg, where aquamarine, heliodor, green beryl and rosterite were extracted. At Mokrusha beryl deposit accompanies to topaz, and beryl exists there in subordinate quantities. Usually the longitude of beryl crystals is no more than 6 cm., the biggest green beryl from the Startsevskaya mine, which was found in 1828, was 24.5 cm. long. Rarely tabular crystals of colorless and light-pink rosterite up to 3x5 cm. size are found. At the Shaytanka deposit the translucent crystal of vorobeyevite by size 5x6x6 cm. is extracted. In 1899-1900, at the Aduiskaya group of deposits, at the Semenihinskaya mine about 0.5 tons of grass-green beryl was extracted. At the Izumrudnye Kopi there are not only emerald but also pale-green beryl crystals. In the Southern Urals bluish-green aquamarines up to 20 cm. long were extracted from pegmatites of the Ilmeny Mts. At the Svetlinskoye deposit a beryl crystal, 17x21x19 cm. in size, was found. To the south from the Ilmeny Mts. wine-yellow beryls were extracted together with topaz at the Kochkar’ gold fields. In the Altai Mts. aquamarine deposits were discovered in pegmatites of the Tigerek Mt., where a crystal of jewelry was found, 61x15 cm. in size. The nontransparent beryl crystals, 146 and 127 cm. long, to 180 kg., were found at the same place; they are exhibited in the Mining Museum of the Mining Inst., SPb. In 1981, in North-west Pribaikalia, Irkutskii Region, on the Kutim River, Suprunovskoye pegmatite deposit with aquamarine was opened. There large short-columnar crystals of blue and green color, up to 50 cm. long, to 20 kg., are found mainly. Because of the heavy cracks and a lot of gas-liquid inclusions the output of cut gems is low at this deposit. In 1980-1990, in western part of the Central Transbaikalia, at the Malkhan Ridge deposits of vorobeyevite were opened, and their exploitation was begun. There, at Vodorazdel’noye and other deposits, beryl was the main gemstone. It was white, yellowish-green, pink, multicolored or colorless. Transparent parts of crystals were up to 4 cm. In East Transbaikalia, at the mines Adun-Chilon, known from 1828, the middle size of aquamarine crystals was 5x1.5 cm., sometimes crystals to 15x4 cm. in size were found. The resource prognosis declares, that there is 17-40% of cutting material. Similar pegmatite bodies with beryl are in the region of the railway station Oloviannaya, at the Scherlovaya Gora deposit of the greisen’s type, which was discovered in 1723. At the best times up to 240 kg. of beryl, quite good for facet, were extracted there; crystals were to 18x6 cm. in size; there were aquamarine, heliodor, rosterite and green beryl. In golden beryl color changes sometimes along the main axis, and greenish tone appears. In 1930-s, in the region of the settlement of Aginskoye, Sakhanai pegmatite field with beryl was discovered. The size of its yellow-green and bluish-green crystals was up to 25 cm. long. They had transparent parts. In the region of Pervomaiskoye in pegmatites of the Orlovskoye deposit there are also green beryl and aquamarine. The size of crystals is up to 10x18 cm., but there is not much gem-quality material. At the Spokoinoye beryl deposit, which is not far from that place, heliodor dominates. In East Transbaikalia, at the Borshchovochnyi Kryazh, from 1850-s not only topaz and tourmaline were known, but also beryl: at Kibiriovskie and Semenovskie mines – vorobeyevite and rosterite, at Zavitinskoye deposit – aquamarine and rosterite. In Transbaikalia there are also known findings of aquamarine with an effect of cat’s-eye, which depends on inclusions of goethite. In Primorskiy Region, in the central part of the Sikhote Alin Ridge, hydrothermal beryl deposits were opened: Tigrinoye and Zabytoe, near the Dal’negorskoye town. On the Chukchi Penin. in greisens of Iultinskiy bonanza on the Amguema River, there is Svetloe tungsten deposit with aquamarine. It can be the analogue of the Sherlovaya Mt. in Transbaikalia. It gave collection aquamarine; some crystals were up to 18 cm. long.

In the Ukraine the most serious is the Volhynskoye beryl deposit in the Zhitomirskiy Region, where noble beryl and heliodor are extracted from pegmatites. Beryls of this deposit have mainly green color with yellowish tone. Sometimes they are olive-green, salad-green and light bluish. Crystals are long-columnar or in the shape of an obelisk, not rare are as if “licked round” crystals with signs of melting of their edges and tube-needle channels, which give in cabochon an effect of cat’s-eye. There are mainly crystals from 3 to 10 cm. long, from 4 to 5 kg. The unique beryl “Vladimir” was 16x18x55 cm. in size, 22 kg. And the biggest beryl crystal was 98 kg. weight. In Central Kazakhstan there are known beryl deposits Aqshataü, Karaoba and Kent. At the latest one were also found crystals of bazzite to 2 cm. in size. In East Kazakhstan, in the Ust’-Kamenogorsk Region, beryl was extracted at the Belogorskoye and Bakennoye deposits. In the Charskiy Dist. of the Karaganda Region the Delbegetei emerald deposit was opened in greisens, in Shetskiy Dist. – Southern Kuu. In South Kyrgyzstan beryl is known in the Turkestan Ridge, in pegmatites of the Kyrk-Bulak beryl deposit. In Tadzhikistan, in the East Pamirs Mts., in the area of Murghob near Rangkul’ Lake, pegmatites of the Mika deposit aquamarine – crystals up to 4x2.5cm., vorobeyevite – crystals in a cross-section up to 10 cm., and rosterite – crystals up to 4x4 cm., were extracted. In Europe we should note Norway, where pegmatites with bazzite to 3 cm. in cross-section are known at the Töredal deposit, in the Telemark Region. In Great Britain, in the Belfast Region (Northern Ireland) aquamarine was extracted. In France, near Ambazac, Haute-Vienne, beryl crystals were found up to 2 m. long. In Spain giant crystals of non-transparent beryl were found near Ponferrad, Galicia Prov. In Italy on the Elba Is. rosterite and vorobeyevite crystals of gem-quality were extracted at the San Piero in the Campo deposit; and in Piedmont, near Baveno – bazzite in crystals to 1.5 cm. In Bulgaria, in pegmatites of the Rodops Mts., there are zone-colored aquamarines from bluish to yellowish-green color; crystals are up to 12 cm. long.

In Africa, in Egypt were the most ancient emerald mines. They were at the watershed between Nile and the Red Sea; they were called “Cleopatra’s Mines” – Sykeit and others. In Zimbabwe, near Maswingo (form. Fort Victoria) emerald deposits were opened: Sandawana, Machingwe and Mayfield. At the mines St Anne‘s morganite crystals, to 40x20 cm. in size, were found. Gem-quality greenish-blue, pale blue, golden, yellow and colorless beryls were extracted in pegmatites of Urungwe-Miami, in the northern part of the country, ~ 200 km to northwest of Harare. In Zambia aquamarine was extracted from pegmatites at the Jagoda deposit, and in the Kafubu Field, Ndola Dist., at the emerald deposits Miku, Kamakanga and others; and in the region of Lukusuzi-Lundazi a deposit of aquamarine was opened in pegmatites. In the same place it was extracted bluish-green beryl – African smaragd. In Tanzania deposits are situated near Manyara Lake, where emerald is excavated together with alexandrite. In West Africa emerald is known in Ghana at the Mampong deposit. In Nigeria, at the Jos Plateau, together with aquamarine emerald crystals, to 5 cm. long, are excavated. In Namibia, in the region of Swakopmund the first heliodor in Rössing village was opened in 1910; and beryl was extracted at the Spitzkopje deposit. Also there, at the Small Spitzkopje deposit, aquamarine is extracted, and at the deposit at Otavi Mts. – aquamarine and morganite. In South Africa emerald is extracted at the mines Somerset, Cobra, Gravelotte and others. On the Barbara mine, near Leydsdorp, Northern Prov., it is extracted green Barbara beryl. Recent years emerald and aquamarine deposits were discovered in northwest Africa in Somalia, not far from its north-western border, in the Borama Region, and to the south from Berbera. In Mozambique deposits of pegmatite type with different colored beryl is in the Alto Ligonha Region, including the Murrua (Morrua) deposit, where aquamarine, heliodor, morganite and emerald are extracted. In pegmatites of Munhamola beryl crystals up to 2 m. long were extracted, and the largest one was 4.2 tons. In the Muiane deposit – aquamarine, beryl, goshenite, and morganite. In pegmatites of Namakotcha the biggest crystal of rosterite was found, it was about 20 kg. In pegmatites of Konko there are crystals of gem-quality black beryl, 15 cm. in cross-section, with the effect of cat’s-eye. A similar beryl was found on Madagascar. The most part of beryl deposits here are situated in the central part of the island – from Tsaratanana on the north to Ambositra on the south. Together with aquamarines such gems as heliodor, vorobeyevite (morganite) and blue beryl are extracted there. Crystals of heliodor demonstrate often an effect of cat’s-eye. The most serious deposits of morganite are lithium pegmatites of Sahatany, Tsilaizina, Anjanabonoina, Ampangabé and Makharitra. There are found sometimes gem-quality morganite crystals up to 20 cm. in cross-section, from which cut gems to 45 ct. can be made. At the Bekily deposit goshenite crystals, up to 7 cm. long, were extracted. In microcline-muscovite pegmatites non-transparent beryl crystals of rather big sizes are found mainly. Pezzottaite is found in amazonite pegmatite at Ambatovita, near Mandrosonoro, Antsirabe area. On the eastern coast of the island emerald deposits were opened near the Mananjary, in the region of Ifanadiana, and near Morafeno.

In Afghanistan, in the Laghman Prov., there are beryl deposits Nialu, Mawi and Kulam with morganite and aquamarine, where crystals to 2x8 cm. in size are found. In the Kunar Prov. similar deposits are situated to the north from Jalalabad, in the valleys rivers of Kunar and Pïch, including the Gur-Salak deposit. In the same region pezzottaite at the Deva mine, Paroon Valley, was found; also there is a hydrothermal deposit of emerald Panjshir Valley. Since 1970, in Nuristan perfect crystals of morganite, up to 13 cm. long, have been extracted at Guskak mine. Besides, big plate crystals of vorobeyevite (morganite) are extracted at the deposits Koorgal. Beryl, which accompanies tourmaline, is excavated in pegmatites of the deposits Dara Pich, Laghman Prov.; Kanokan, Jaba and Buni (See tourmaline). In Pakistan, in the North-West Frontier Prov., there are some emerald deposits: Gujar-Kili, Swäthi and Mingäora. In the Islämabäd region, to the north-west from Räwalpindi, aquamarine deposits are known. Recent years, aquamarine crystals to 20 cm. long came from Pakistan, they were extracted in the source of the Indus River in the Jammu and Kashmir State, India (disputed area). There pegmatites of Teston and Dusso (Dassu) deposits and a field in the Shigar Valley, the Indus basin, are worked out. The size of aquamarine crystals is up to 15x7.5 cm. there; but the biggest crystals have cracks. In the same region, in pegmatites of the Hunza Valley, and near Nagar there are the Fikar deposits with aquamarine crystals to 15 cm. long, and near Gilgit there are the Khaltaro and Baltizan emerald deposits. In the Orissa State, there is the aquamarine Sambalpur deposit. Aquamarine is also extracted in the states Tamil Nädu and Karnataka. In Sri Lanka aquamarine is extracted from mica pegmatites and ancient fields, including in area Ratnapura. Weight of some transparent stones of aquamarine is up to 200-300 ct. In China, Sichuan Prov., morganite is extracted as plate crystals; 4x9x9 cm. in size, there is also the aquamarine Pingwu deposit. In Mongolian Altai, in pegmatites of the Xinjian Uygur Autonomous Region; in the Altai Mts., the Koktogai deposit of blue beryl was discovered; and in the region of Kococtau pegmatites with beryl crystals, up to 52 cm. long, were found. Beryl was extracted also in the Hunan Prov. Recent years perfect beryl crystals in the shape of “pencil”, up to 20 cm. long, were found at the deposits Karur, Guangdong Prov. In Vietnam there is the beryl Tah-Hoa deposit. In Nepal and Bhutan there are deposits of gem-quality beryl, and in Nepal at Fakuwa mine there is a pegmatite vein with aquamarine. In Mongolia beryl was found at the Gorikho deposit, near Ulan Bator.

In Western Australia, to the northwest from Perth, the big emerald deposit Aga Khon was opened. Gem-quality morganite is also found there. Emeralds are rather transparent there, but they are pale colored, that’ why some of them are qualified as green beryl with crystals to 5 ct. In New South Wales, at the tungsten deposit Heffernan, near Torrington, beryl crystals of yellowish-green and pale blue color, from which cut gems to 73 ct. was made. In the pegmatite field Euroyowi, Broken Hill Region, vorobeyevite is extracted. At the deposits Mt. Surprise and Mariba, in Queensland, aquamarine was extracted.

In Brazil the first beryl deposits have been known for Europeans since the middle of the 16th cent.. Nowadays, about 90% of high quality aquamarines of the world are extracted; there are also deposits of other kinds of beryl. The most parts of deposits are concentrated on the territory of pegmatite province – about 600 km. at the border of the states of Minas Gerais and Bahia. In Bahia there are the largest deposits: Salininha, Sokoto and Carnaíba with vanadium beryl and emerald, and Jaqueto with aquamarine. There are also beryl placers on the rivers Rio de Contas and Rio Pardo. In Minas Gerais we should mention some beryl deposits on the Oro Prêto: Sapukaia, Villa Rica, Nova Era, Maxixe; and on the Marambaia River: Paramel mine and Três Barras deposit, where heliodor, maxixeberyl and aquamarine crystals to 1 m. long are extracted. In the valley of the rivers Jequitinhonha, Rio Dosi and in the region of Araque, Capellinha, and Malacasheta Rivers there were placers with aquamarine and other gemstones. Aquamarine was extracted also at the deposits Mimoso do Sol and Ilia Allegri, where crystals up to 9 kg. were found. At the deposits Coronel Murta and Santa Maria aquamarine of intensive blue color and yellow-red beryl – bocado fugu beryllo was extracted, also at the Juiz de Fora deposit – heliodor. In the region of Ibitiara the Belmonte emerald deposit is excavated. In 1811, near Teófilo Otoni the first aquamarine, more than 20 kg., was found. In the region of São Jose de Safira, at the Lavra do Criminosu deposit goshenite crystals, to 9 cm. in crosssection, are extracted. At the Maranal deposit and at some others, between Teófilo Otoni and Medina, aquamarine is represented with “pencils”, 20x2 cm. in size, which have an effect of cat’s-eye in cabochon because of inclusions of goethite. At the Pedra Azul deposit (form. Fortaleza), near Teófilo Otoni, bright blue aquamarine of gem-quality in crystals up to 12 kg., for cut gems to 10-15 ct.; it has the trademark Fortalesa aquamarine. For the high quality aquamarine from the Pampanel deposit l the trade mark Pampanel aquamarine was adopted. In the same Minas Gerais, in Governador Valadares two deposits of morganite were discovered: one – in the region Itambacuri; another one – Córrego do Urucum near Galiléia. Another one of morganite deposit Resplendor is situated in the Conselheiro Pena Dist. In pegmatites of Urucum short-columnar crystals of gem-quality morganite, up to 60x25 cm. in size, were extracted. In that region heliodor was also found from time to time, mainly at the Urubu deposit. In the region of Virgem da Lapa the Paineiras mine with orange beryl is worked out; and at the Valadares locality crystals of brown and black beryl with an effect of asterism are found. In the Goiás State the emerald deposit Santa Teresinha was discovered. Besides, deposits of gem-quality beryl are in the states of Ceará, Espirito Santo and Rio Grande do Norte. There are not only blue aquamarines but also rare brown beryls, which have an effect of asterism after cut. In Colombia, at the East Cordilleras, there are hydrothermal deposits of emerald, which are situated as two lines, more than 100 km. long. In the eastern line there are deposits Chivor and Gachala, in the western one – Muzo, Cosquez and others (See emerald). In the Argentina, there are two beryl deposits, mainly with heliodor and aquamarine – Santa Anna, in the San Luis Prov.; and Río Cuarto – in the Cordoba Prov. In the U.S.A., in spite of the big quantity of granite pegmatites, there are no industrial deposits of noble beryl. In California, in the region of Aquanga, San Diego Co., aquamarine and heliodor were found, at the deposits Pala Chief Gem and Tourmaline Queen morganite in the crystals up to 25 cm. long was found, in Idaho – blue beryl. In Colorado, at the deposits Antero, White, Chief and others crystals of aquamarine, up to 30x10 cm. in size, were found. In Maine State, at the Fisher Quarry deposit and others aquamarine and heliodor were extracted. Morganite in crystals up to 33x23 cm. at the Bennett Quarry deposit, Oxford Co., was found; also at the same deposit goshenite in crystals up to 7 cm. long. In New Hampshire, at the Island Mika mine there were findings of aquamarine and heliodor, the latest had an effect of cat’s-eye in cabochon. In North Carolina, in the Alexander Co., at the mines Crabtree, Rist, Hiddenite, Kings Mountain, and Stony-Point emerald were found. In Connecticut light green beryl were found. In 1897, in Utah, at the Tomas-Mountain deposit, in rhyolites of the southern part of the Thomas Range bixbite was discovered. In the end of 1950-s, its Harris deposit in the Wah Wah Mts., and at the Violet Mine red beryl was found. Findings of bixbite were also in New Mexico, in Grant Co., at the western slope of the Black Range. In Mexico, the similar magmatic deposits of bixbite are in San Luis Potosí. There were found mainly short-columnar crystals up to 3 cm. long. The biggest of cut gems was not more than 2 ct., and its price was to $5,000 per ct.

Unique Findings. (See App. 5). The biggest non-transparent beryl crystal in the world was found on Madagascar, at the Malakialina deposit in 1964. Its length is 18 m., cross-section – 3.5 m., weight – 379.5 tons. A bit less is the crystal, 200 tons, from the Picuí deposit, Paraíba State, Brazil. In 1938, in the same country, in Minas Gerais, near Lavra do Pederneira, the non-transparent crystal of blue beryl, 3 tons and 5x1 m. in size, was found. On the Tres Barree River the crystal of aquamarine “Estrella de Alva” – 19.2 kg. In the U.S.A., in South Dakota the non-transparent beryl crystal 8.5 m. long, 61 ton at the Keystone deposit, Pennington Co., was found. In Maine State the biggest crystal of pink beryl, 18 ton, was found. In India, in pegmatites of Rajasthan they discovered columnar crystals of beryl up to 6 m long, up to 1.2 m. wide and 20 ton weight. In Russia, one of the first unique findings was aquamarine, 82 kg., which was found in East Transbaikalia in 1796. In the Mining Museum, SPb. there is a transparent beryl crystal of thick asparagus color, – a hexagonal prism 24x27 cm. in size, and 2.5 kg. It was found near Alabashka in 1828, the Emperor Nicholas I gifted it to the museum. In the Urals the biggest heliodor crystal 2.4 kg. was found. In south-east Transbaikalia among the findings of the recent years we could mention light pink crystals of vorobeyevite up to 9x6x5 cm. from pegmatites of the Malkhan Ridge. In East Transbaikalia beryl crystals up to 13 cm. long at the Orlovskoye deposit were found. In the British Museum., London, the crystal of aquamarine 110.2 kg. from the Adun Chilon deposit, East Transbaikalia, is exhibited. There is also the transparent beryl crystal, 31x5 cm. in size, in the same museum. In the Ukraine, at the Volhynskoye deposit there were transparent crystals of green beryl up to 38 cm. long. The biggest gem-quality aquamarines came from Brazil, mainly from Minas Gerais. In 1910, at the Marambaia deposit, near Teófilo Otoni, the famous two-sided aquamarine crystal “Pampanel” was found; it was 110.2 kg. or 551,000 ct., 48.2x40.6 cm. in size. It was perfect in purity, blue in the center and greenish-yellow in the outer zone. It was sold for nearly $30,000. Its least part, 6 kg., is hold in the AMNH, N.Y., now. From the largest part after the improvement 200,000 ct. of cut stones have been received. In 1954, at the Marambaia deposit the aquamarine crystal, 33.928 kg. or 173,000 ct., was found, from which cut stones with the general weight 57,200 ct. were made. It had the name “Marta Roha” after “Miss Brazil” of that year. In 1942, in the region of Governador Valadares, aquamarine crystal, 108 kg., was found, which was sold for $40,000. Another transparent aquamarine crystal, 61 kg., was evaluated in $400,000 in 1955. Another one beryl crystal, 32 kg, which was found at the Tenneti Ozorio mine in 1983, was evaluated in $1.5 million. Among the other findings we should mention aquamarine, 22 kg., 72.5 cm. long and 15 cm. in crosssection, which was found in 1961. After cutting in 1979, 70,000 ct. of facet gems were made from it, for $250,000. In Rio de Janeiro, in the shop of the jeweler H. Stern the transparent aquamarine crystal, 59x38 cm. in size, 19 kg., was exhibited. It was found in Bahia, at the Jaqueto mine in 1979. In the collection of the British Museum, London, there is a crystal of heliodor from Madagascar, 27 cm. long, 4 kg., and a crystal of morganite from the U.S.A., California – 4.07 kg.

Synonyms. Beryl – Basaltine amethyst | Chrysolite aquamarine | Ballur (bullur), Pers. | Baraket, according the Bible | Barbara beryl, from Barbara mines, South Africa | Boggy beryl | Chrysolite beryl | Star beryl | Black star beryl | Black beryl cat’s-eye | Brazilian tourmaline | Vaidûrya, Hindu. | Viridon, obs. | Virill, obs. | Virulion (Virillon), obs. Russ. | Warilion, obs. Russ.

AquamarinePeridote aquamarine | Schorl aquamarine, obs. | Aeroides, Pliny the Elder. | Augustite (agustite), mist. | Nerchinsk beryl | Aquamarin-chrysolite | Hyacinthozontes, obs. | Bluish morevod, obs. Russ. | Zaberzat.

~ Aquamarine (on the place of extraction): Brazilian ~, Colorado ~, Madagascar ~, Mozambique ~, Murzinka ~, Nerchinsk ~, Siberian ~.

Heliodor – Canary beryl | Cerinus, obs. | Chrysoberyllus, obs. | Commercial chrysolite | Chrysolithus, obs. Gk. | Chrysopilon | Davidsonite, after of J. Davidson, Amer. trademark for greenish-yellow beryl | Bahia emerald, after its discovery locality, in the Bahia State, Brazil | Chalcedonyan emerald, Pliny the Elder | Gold emerald | Livirion, obs. Russ.

Vorobeyevite – Lithium beryl | Morganite after Morgan J.P. (1837-1913), Amer. collector | Californian morganite | Madagascar morganite | Rosaberyll, Germ. | Worobewite.

Bixbite – Basaltine amethyst | Pink beryl.

Goshenite – White beryl | White emerald | Leucoberyl.

Quality improvement. Orange-yellow color of heliodor under annealing to 450°C can disappear or transfer to blue, but after irradiation the initial color restores. Colored geshenite after annealing becomes colorless, under irradiation it receives yellow-orange or blue color. Aquamarine can be made from yellowish-green beryl, geshenite and vorobeyevite as a result of annealing to 450°C with following irradiation – by gamma rays, X-rays or electrons. However, it has trend to restore the initial greenish-yellow color. Such improved beryl is called Brazilian aquamarine. Under annealing color of aquamarine can become brighter but under the high temperatures it looses its color. Color of vorobeyevite under annealing to 500°C, according admixtures, can be lost or brightened, after irradiation it becomes yellow or yellow-orange. Orange color of bixbite after annealing becomes rose or it is lost. In the sunshine it becomes lighter very fast – to rose, after irradiation it becomes yellow or yellow-orange. Color of maxixe type beryl is connected with iron admixture. It can be blue, pink, yellow, green and colorless. After annealing it becomes colorless or pink. Its color is being lost in the sunshine. After irradiation it receive blue color but sometimes – bluish-green and with the high level of iron admixture – green. Another method of beryl improvement is ion implantation. For instance, implantation of iron to the edges of colorless beryl gives it golden-yellow color of heliodor. We can mention also another improvement method: growing a fine layer of colored beryl at the priming with the hydrothermal method – so called synthetic coated beryl is received. It can be grass-green emeraldsynthetic coated emerald-beryl, dark blue synthetic coated maxixe beryl, pink synthetic coated vorobeyevite, red synthetic coated bixbite, synthetic coated multicolored beryl. The thickness of grown layer (coat) is 50-200 micron, color depends on following admixtures: red, pink – manganese and cobalt; green – chromium, vanadium, iron, nickel; blue – iron, titanium; black – iron.

Cut Gems. As a gem-quality beryl was known from the ancient times. Beryl beads were found during excavations on the banks of Nile in Egypt. They were classified as Pliny the Elder mentioned artifacts of 3000 B.C. beryl in the works. Beryl is used widely for cutting, in glyptic and stone plastic. In the collection of gems in the Archaeological Museum in Florence there is an intaglio on aquamarine with the depiction of the head of Pompeus. In the collection of gems in the State Hermitage, SPb. there are some cameos on aquamarine, including the depiction of Neptune, 3.5x2.2 cm. in size, made by Ital. masters of the 16th cent.. Transparent varieties of beryl are faceted like emerald in a rectangular form with stairs, more rare they are cut in such forms as “antique”, “shuttle” or “briolette”. Colorless goshenite was faceted as an imitation of brilliant previous times. The biggest faceted goshenite, which is kept in the Smiths. Inst., Wash., has 61.9 ct. Bixbite is usually not more than 3 ct. in a faceted form. The most beautiful vorobeyevite faceted with stairs, 598.75 ct., is kept in the State Hermitage, SPb.

Unique Gems. (See App. 6). In 1867, at the World exhibition in Paris, they exhibited a bust of the Emperor Napoleon III, 6,142 kg, carved from a crystal of aquamarine found in China. In the U.S.A., in the Nat. Hist. Museum, Los Angeles the biggest aquamarine cut in the form of an oval, 2,594 ct., and 146x47x38 mm. In the Smiths. Inst. Wash. there are such gems from Brazil: the biggest facet heliodor, 10.5 cm. long and 2,054 ct., green beryl, 1,363 ct., aquamarines, 1000 ct. and 911 ct., and an aquamarine from Siberia, 263.5 ct. There was also heliodor cat’s-eye, 82.85 ct. In the AMNH, N.Y., N.Y. there is a dark blue aquamarine from Brazil, 144.5 ct., and a light blue one from Sri Lanka, 355 ct. There is also a morganite from Madagascar cut in the shape of the heart, 58.8 ct. The biggest faceted morganite, 1,625 ct., from Madagascar is kept in the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto; and there is a cabochon made of morganite cat’s-eye, 118.6 ct. Initially it had perfect orange color, which was gradually lost. Another morganite from Madagascar, 598.75 ct., is kept in the British Museum, London; and a faceted aquamarine from Brazil, 879 ct., is exhibited. In the Museum of Hyde Park, London, there is a faceted aquamarine, 1,847 ct. A faceted aquamarine, 920 ct., is in one of the English Royal crowns. The scepter of the Polish King Stanislaw, made from an aquamarine crystal 30 cm. long, was sent back from the Armory Museum Kreml., Moscow to Poland as a national relic. An example of using aquamarine in glyptic we could mention an intaglio made by Evodius (1th cent. A.D.), 50x35 mm in size, with a portrait of Julia, the daughter of the Roman Emperor Titus. It is kept in the Cabinet of medals of the Bibl. Nat. Paris. In the AMNH, N.Y. there is a female statuette, 11x6 cm. in size, cut from a crystal of morganite from the Anjanaboana deposit, Madagascar.

Legends. Astrologers connect beryl with the Moon, Venus and Pluto. They suppose it is a stone of home fireplace, which is a symbol of happiness and peace. Beryl was one of the gems of the high priest Aaron. The Christianity dedicates it to the apostle Thomas. In the epoch of the Renaissance beryl was considered as a talisman of artists and sculptors, because it helped them in the creative process, took the fatigue off, kept spiritual activity, strengthened the intellect and helped in love affairs. As an amulet it protects life in voyages. Beryl is a gem of October and a lucky gem of the Zodiac signs of the Gemini and the Libra. In Ancient Greece aquamarine was dedicated to the god of the ocean Poseidon. Beryl was treated as a gem of wisdom and eternal friendship; it was also a talisman of sailors, voyagers and all travelers. As an amulet it protects marriage unions, cools quarrels and passions, and helps to take stresses and fears off. It is a lucky gem for people who are born in March. In Madagascar morganite is a national symbol of country.

Synthesis. Beryl and its varieties including synthetic emerald (See Emerald), receive artificially rather high jeweler quality, that’s why it is so difficult to distinguish them from natural analogues. In Russia, in Novosibirsk they receive synthetic beryl of blue and pink color with the flux method. The hydrothermal method with using of special admixtures gives such synthetic beryls: blue synthetic aquamarine – iron, pink synthetic morganit – manganese, red-violet – cobalt, turquoise-blue, which doesn’t exist in nature – copper, yellow-green – nickel, violet – manganese plus copper and yellow – nickel plus copper or nickel plus cobalt. Beryls received with this method usually have zone distribution of color. For example, pink in the center and green in the outer zone. The Japanese firm in Osaka made such synthetic beryl in 1979; it received the trademark watermelon beryl or Adashy synthetic beryl, according the name of the firm “Adashy Shin Industrial company, Ltd.”. There is also synthetic beryl cat’s-eye – hemerald. In Novosibirsk beryl is produced with the method of gas-transported reactions. As a result there were to become: colorless beryl, bluish-green – with chromium, grass-green – with vanadium, green – with nickel, blue – with iron or copper, lilac – with titanium, pink – with manganese, red – with cobalt and turquoise – with copper.

Similar Gemstones & Imitations. Beryl and some of its varieties look like sapphire and topaz. Aquamarine looks like pale sapphire, blue topaz, zircon, euclase, kyanite and such materials as synthetic spinel and quartz, as well as glass. Beryl differs in hardness, optical proprieties and typical defects, such as “channels” along the main crystal axis and flat inclusions of white color, which are called “chrysanthemum” or “snow signs”. Noble beryl and heliodor look like sapphire, topaz, chrysoberyl, citrine and brazilianite. Vorobeyevite looks like kunzite and pink sapphire. As imitations of beryl many similar colored materials are used, as well as synthetic materials: beryl, corundum, spinel, phianite, synthetic garnets and glass, including such glass imitation as mass-aqua, which looks like aquamarine.