Tourmaline is one of the February stones mascots

Tourmaline is considered one of the stones -- mascots of February. This mineral is one of the precious stones that are well known for a long time and are widely used throughout the world. Crystals can be colourless, yellow, red, orange, green, blue and completely black. There are many shades of stone, and they can be combined in one piece of rock. Its polychromy attracts jewellers.

The name of the mineral is of Sri Lankan (Ceylon) origin. In the local dialect, the word "tourmaline" means "magic color". The mineral was used in jewelry and healing in the Roman Empire and the Roman Republic, Byzantium and Ancient Russia. Europe was acquainted with the stone only in the 17th century due to the Dutch navigators - tourmaline quickly gained popularity because of its beauty and unique properties.

In Russia, tourmalines were mined in the Urals, in Transbaikalia (Malkhanskoye deposit), Karelia and the Kola peninsula. At present, the Ural deposits have been depleted. Tourmalines of several varieties of high quality are mined in Transbaikalia, the “specialization” of Karelia are schorls (stones of black color due to high concentration of iron), of the Kola Peninsula -- pink and green tourmalines and schorls. Eighty percent of global tourmaline export is from Brazil. This country converted the mineral in one of the Brazilian recognizable brands. Gems that are called Brazilian rubies, sapphires and emeralds, actually are tourmalines of different tints.

Tourmaline is a unique stone. It contains a charge of electricity and ionizes the air. Traditional practitioners endowed tourmaline with healing and magical properties and were using it as an amulet or mascot since ancient times. It is assumed that blue color stones cool the mind and help to act wisely. They guard the family and protect from conflict situations. Black ones are the most powerful amulets. They protect from ill-wishers, dark witchcraft; help a person achieve everyting that he desires. Schörl is a stone of luck, it assists fortune-tellers.

Litho therapists that study the impact of minerals on the body recommend this mineral for positive effect on the endocrine and nervous systems. Perhaps the healing effect of the mineral is associated with its direct electric field. This is the only stone with such unique properties. In addition, it was proved that the crystals have infrared radiation. Tourmaline helps people to focus attention and dispel fears. It indicates radioactivity and surrounds a person with force field.
Tourmaline is a stone of poets, a source of inspiration, it relaxes and calms a person. It was a stone of positive dreams for the Romans. The mineral acquired special significance among the followers of Eastern religions. It is involved with the heart chakra, helps to strengthens it . Tourmaline mascot tightens matrimonial alliances.

The most famous tourmaline in the history of mankind is the legendary gem stone in the form of a bunch of grapes - "Caesar's ruby". According to the legend, Queen Cleopatra presented it to Julius Caesar. Later, the traces of the stone were lost, it appeared in different countries, until in the 18th century it came to the possession of the king of Sweden -- Gustav VIII presented it to the Russian Empress Catherine II. "Bunch of grapes" from the day of its appearance was considered a ruby. Only in the 20th century it became clear that it was Burmese pink tourmaline.

Depending on the type, degree of transparency and purity, tourmalines can be precious and semi-precious. Of all tourmaline group  14 types -- only 5 varieties are gemstones. The rest are ornamental stones, used in arts and crafts to make figurines and souvenirs. Tourmaline is the only one of all precious minerals that has its own trade name for each color variety.

Thematic photo album is posted in our Photo Gallery.

On the cover: Box with plates of watermelon tourmaline.
Manfred Wild, Emile Becker firm. Germany, Idar-Oberstein. The 1980-1990s