DECEMBER BIRTHSTONE - TANZANITE


Tanzanite is relatively new on the gemstone market, but has left its mark. Its blue-lavender color is rather unique and a wonderful addition to the gemstone palette. Found in Tanzania (hence the name) in 1967, it has since become a well known and widely distributed gemstone. It has become so popular that in October of 2002 the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) announced that tanzanite had joined zircon and turquoise in the traditional list of birthstones for the month of December. Tanzanite is associated with contentment and understanding.

It has better fire than the tourmaline elbaite or peridot and an adequate hardness. Its only one direction of cleavage is somewhat of a problem because it is oriented with the direction of strongest pleochroism. This would be a problem in most gemstones because that is the direction the gemcutter would usually select to maximize the color. However, with tanzanite the color is usually strong enough anyway.

Pleochroism is very pronounced in tanzanite and is seen as three different color shades in the same stone. In the viewing a tanzanite stone, the colors dark blue, green-yellow and red-purple can be seen, all a result of pleochroism. Lesser stones may have a brownish color due to the mixing of blue, purple and green. These stones are usually heat treated to a deep blue color. Iolite is a blue-violet gemstone variety of the mineral cordierite, has strong pleochroism and can be confused with tanzanite. However, iolite is usually less strongly colored, its pleochroic colors vary from blue-violet to yellowish gray to blue and it has less fire.

Nearly all tanzanite has been heat treated to generate the beautiful violet-blue color this stone is known for.  When first mined, most stones are a muted green color. The only known source of Tanzanite is a five square mile hilltop at Merelani, ten miles south of the Kilimanjaro International Airport in Tanzania.

Tanzanite is the gem variety of the mineral Zoisite.

For natural tanzanite mineral specimens see our For Sale or Sold lists

Tanzanite Jewelry - Hover over an item for more information
Round Tanzanite Sterling Silver Promise Ring with White Sapphire - Written in the Stars Ring
Two glittering gemstones and numerous star etchings rest atop the hollowed upper band of this gleaming ring, designed for the stargazers among us.Only $225.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Tanzanite Sterling Silver Promise Ring with White Sapphire - Written in the Stars Ring
$225.00
Gemvara
Tanzanite Stationed Necklace in Sterling Silver, One Size
Simply chic, this gemstone necklace features fifteen bezel-set tanzanite gemstones stationed along a sterling silver cable chain. The necklace can be worn at 16, 17 or 18 inches.Only $150.00 at Blue Nile
no photoTanzanite Stationed Necklace in Sterling Silver, One Size
$150.00
Blue Nile
Sterling Silver Promise Ring with Tanzanite & Amethyst - Infinite Love Ring
Two people, two gems, linked for eternity in this classic ring that symbolizes infinite love. Infinity symbols surround the finger in an endless circle. Customize this design with your two birthstones or use personal symbolism to represent your union.Only $265.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Promise Ring with Tanzanite & Amethyst - Infinite Love Ring
$265.00
Gemvara
Round Peridot Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Tanzanite & Emerald - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $215.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Peridot Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Tanzanite & Emerald - Venus Band
$215.00
Gemvara
Round Red Garnet Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Tanzanite - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $200.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Red Garnet Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Tanzanite - Venus Band
$200.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Ring with Amethyst & Tanzanite - Modern Sculpture Ring
Bezel-set gemstones accent the striking, modern design of this stackable ring. It is carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $270.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Ring with Amethyst & Tanzanite - Modern Sculpture Ring
$270.00
Gemvara
Round Sapphire Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Pink Sapphire & Tanzanite - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $210.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Sapphire Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Pink Sapphire & Tanzanite - Venus Band
$210.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Necklace with Tanzanite - Love Letters 'I' Pendant With Gem
You choose the lowercase letter below and the meaning behind it. Artisans handcraft the precious metal of your choice in a single flowing line, and accent the design with your favorite gem. The chain threads directly through the letter.Only $135.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Necklace with Tanzanite - Love Letters 'I' Pendant With Gem
$135.00
Gemvara
Round Tanzanite 14K White Gold Promise Ring - Petite Claddagh Ring
A petite version of the traditional Irish Claddagh Ring. This ring is given as a token of love or marriage and is carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $305.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Tanzanite 14K White Gold Promise Ring - Petite Claddagh Ring
$305.00
Gemvara
Round Tanzanite Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with London Blue Topaz - Mothers Gift Ring With Three Gems
This three-gem ring is designed to be set with birthstones to represent three children or a couple and a child. This ring can be worn in multiples so you can keep all the ones you love close at hand.Only $320.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Tanzanite Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with London Blue Topaz - Mothers Gift Ring With Three Gems
$320.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Iolite & Tanzanite - Double Embrace Ring
Two, 4mm round-cut gemstones are held in the curve of this stunning, contemporary design. Choose your gems and metal.Only $310.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Mother's Ring with Iolite & Tanzanite - Double Embrace Ring
$310.00
Gemvara
Round Tanzanite Sterling Silver Promise Ring - Petite Claddagh Ring
A petite version of the traditional Irish Claddagh Ring. This ring is given as a token of love or marriage and is carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $135.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Tanzanite Sterling Silver Promise Ring - Petite Claddagh Ring
$135.00
Gemvara
Round Amethyst Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Iolite & Tanzanite - Quintessence Ring
Five sparkling gems cover the finger with brilliance in this classic style that is a Gemvara Essential.Only $315.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Amethyst Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Iolite & Tanzanite - Quintessence Ring
$315.00
Gemvara
Round Peridot Sterling Silver Engagement Ring with Sapphire & Tanzanite - Carrie Ring
Simply stunning, this ring 's round brilliant gem is perfectly complemented by a delicate and feminine band with gems half-way around the finger. More gems surround the side of the center stone. All you'll see from every angle is dazzling brilliance.Only $695.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Peridot Sterling Silver Engagement Ring with Sapphire & Tanzanite - Carrie Ring
$695.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Peridot & Tanzanite - Double Embrace Ring
Two, 4mm round-cut gemstones are held in the curve of this stunning, contemporary design. Choose your gems and metal.Only $310.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Mother's Ring with Peridot & Tanzanite - Double Embrace Ring
$310.00
Gemvara
 


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