Colour: Pale pink to orange pink
Moh's Hardness: 7.5-8
Morganite is typically a pastel hued gem in the beryl mineral family, the same as emerald and aquamarine. While lesser known than these other gems, morganite is quickly growing in popularity for jewellery due to it’s good hardness and appealing colour. Traces of manganese give this gem its colour which can range from pastel pink to orange tinted salmon.
Morganite was first discovered on the coast of Madagascar in 1910 and named after the famous financier J.P. Morgan, who was an avid gem collector.
While it doesn’t grow as large as other beryls, in 1989 one of the largest specimens of morganite ever found was discovered in Maine. Weighing 23kgs, it was named The Rose of Maine.
Today, most of the morganite on the market comes from Brazil. Minor producers include Afghanistan, Madagascar, Mozambique, Russia and the USA. The soft and appealing colour is becoming popular for engagement rings and the large crystals make it a great stone to explore custom cuts.
Morganite is one of the more durable gemstones but still requires care when worn, especially in rings. Note that while it can be popular for engagement rings, it's softer than other recommended gems such as diamonds and sapphires so the wearer must treat it with care. Be careful to avoid any hard knocks, remove when doing anything that might damage the stone and keep away from harsh chemicals. To clean, soak in warm soapy water and use a soft brush to remove any dirt and grime. Store your piece in its own box to avoid scratching.
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