Black Tourmaline Stone
Black Tourmaline Stone
The tourmaline – a multicolored mixed crystal
Tourmalines belong to the tourmaline group, a group of silicate minerals. The name of the gem comes from Sinhala. The word turamali means “stone of mixed colors”. Corresponding to this name, the gemstones of the tourmaline group come in a wide variety of colors.
Characteristics and color of tourmaline
The tourmaline is available in more than 50 different shades – from colorless to pink, red, yellow, brown, green, blue and black. However, the latter are often precious stones with a very high color saturation and a particularly dark green, blue or brown. The crystals usually combine different tones or different colors, but monochromatic ones are quite rare. There are both translucent and opaque tourmalines. Of the many different variants of tourmaline, the gemstones green tourmaline (verdelite) and red or pink tourmaline (rubellite) are particularly popular.
It used to be assumed that the tourmaline could glow by itself. Today we know that the so-called pleochroism (multicolor), which is characteristic of these gemstones, led to this assumption. This means that the stone shimmers in a different color or with different intensity, depending on the viewing direction. Tourmaline cat’s eyes come in a variety of colors. However, the light stripe is only really sharp on the green and pink varieties. The reason for this are fibrous inclusions of foreign crystals or thin hollow channels.
If the tourmaline is heated and then cooled again, the stone becomes electrically charged and attracts dust particles or small pieces of paper (pyroelectric and piezoelectricity). The gem is then positively charged on one end and negatively charged on the other. In the Netherlands, the electrically charged tourmaline was also used to clean pipes. The heated stones attracted the tobacco ash. The tourmaline was therefore also called Aschentrekker (ash puller) for a long time. Color changes are also possible by heating the colored gemstones to 450 to 650°C. Green stones can be given an emerald color, reddish-brown stones a bright red. Others are only brightened by this. With a Mohs hardness of 7 to 7.5, tourmaline is one of the more robust gemstones.
Green Tourmaline – a gemstone with healing properties
Experts call a green tourmaline “verdelite”. Verde stands for the green color of the gemstone in all its nuances. Such a green gem can appear dark brown when viewed from the side. Many tourmalines darken when viewed from the tip. The green variety is said to make you patient. Furthermore, it should promote openness and interest in other people. The unique stone should also help to keep track of difficult decisions. With its radiance it brings joie de vivre and clarity.
The green tourmaline is one of the most important healing stones of all – it is said to have a healing effect on the psyche, soul and body.
The tourmaline and its history
Although tourmalines have been known in the Mediterranean since ancient times, it was not until 1703 that the Dutch brought them to western and central Europe. The often multi-colored, radiant gemstones they referred to with the Sinhalese word turamali – “stone with mixed colors”. An ancient Egyptian legend says that the tourmaline must have traveled over a rainbow on its way out of the earth’s interior and picked up its color there. Hence the term “gem of heaven”, which is still used today. Because the stone comes in many different shapes and colors, it used to be confused with other gemstones
Origin of Tourmaline
Tourmaline can be found almost anywhere in the world. In Europe, for example, on Elba (Italy) and in Ticino (Switzerland), but here the quantities and qualities are rather insignificant. The most important and largest supplier of tourmaline is Brazil. The Paraiba tourmaline from the Brazilian state of the same name is particularly popular. The tourmaline gemstones with the incomparable intense blue and blue-green color were first discovered in the late 1980s in a mine in the Brazilian state of Paraiba. In Africa, too, more and more tourmaline deposits are now being found.
Tourmaline jewelry and other uses of the gemstone
Particularly beautiful specimens of the tourmaline gemstone are used in high-quality jewellery. In addition, the best in football receive a Tourmaline award every year. For example, the championship trophy of the German Bundesliga is set with 21 tourmalines. The DFB Pokal is also adorned with tourmaline gemstones. Tourmaline is the first crystal in which the pyroelectric effect was observed. Due to these special electrical properties, it is also used in electronics.
Individual designs with tourmalines