“The very pink of perfection.”
Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774)
Kunzite owes its name to gemologist George Frederick Kunz, who discovered the gemstone in 1902 in California. A studious and self-trained researcher, he collected over 4000 species of mineral as an adolescent, and his passion and expertise led him to the position of gem expert with Tiffany & Co at the tender age of 23. Initially, Kunzite was marketed as the ‘Iris of California,' but Kunzite is the only name that remains today.
Wonderful examples of sought after Patroke Kunzites
Chemical composition of Kunzite
Kunzite is a colored variety Spodumene. Various color varieties of this mineral are caused by trace amounts of iron (yellow to green), chrome (mid-green to deep green) and manganese (pink to purple-red).
Kunzite deposits are located in Afghanistan, Brazil, Madagascar, Pakistan, and even the original Californian deposits continue to sporadically provide a rare gemstone quality piece.
The history of Kunzite
Kunzite: Raw crystal and cut gemstone
As a recently discovered stone, Kunzite does not have a rich mythology other than its color. Kunzite is a quintessentially feminine gemstone; after all, pink has long been considered the most romantic of colors, and is typically associated with love. According to color psychology, pink possesses reassuring qualities.
Properties of Kunzite
The most important criterion for determining the value of a Kunzite gem is its colorful shine, and the darker varieties are the most expensive. Its colors are described by gemologists as pink, blue-violet, violet, violet-red, red-purple or purple-red. Kunzite crystals show occasional inclusions, so the standard is generally eye-clean (no visible inclusions when the gemstone is viewed with the naked eye from 15 cm away). One interesting characteristic of Kunzite is its phosphorescence, its ability to emit a glow of light following exposure to ultraviolet light. Kunzite is also strongly pleochromic; its colors and their intensity change depending on viewing angle.
Varieties of Kunzite
Among the varieties of Kunzite are White Kunzite, which shows an icy white, Champagne Kunzite from Brazil, named for the delicate balance between light pink and corn yellow, and the highly sought-after Patroke Kunzite, with its rich and deep orchid coloration, extracted from the Patroke mine in Afghanistan
Care for Kunzite
A few examples, if exposed to a strong light source, lose color intensity.