Gold is a pure chemical element with the symbol Au. The word gold comes from the Old English word “geolu”, which means yellow. It is the only metal in nature that is yellow or “golden”. It is believed that nearly all of the gold on Earth came from meteorites that bombarded the planet over 200 million years after it formed. Gold has been considered the most beautiful of all chemical elements. For thousands of years it has been a coveted and prestigious metal used in jewelry, coins, and artwork.
Alloys & Purity
Yellow gold is very soft and is usually combined with other metals, or alloys. A gold “alloy” is made by combining pure gold with other metals to make it stronger and durable. The amount of pure gold present in a gold alloy is described in karats. The highest possible karat is 24 and is considered pure gold which has no metals alloys. The most common alloys used are nickel, copper and zinc.
Rose gold is a combination of yellow gold and copper. The copper percentage used effects the hue and color of the gold. Pink gold uses the least copper, followed by rose gold, with red gold having the highest copper content.
Each gemstone is a unique gift from Mother Nature. These colorful minerals are grown and formed deep beneath the earth’s surface over thousands of years. Each gemstone is unique. Gemstones come in a rainbow of colors. Some gemstones have been treasured since before history began and others were only discovered recently.
For thousands of years, the ruby has been considered one of the most valuable gemstones on Earth. The red color is caused mainly by the presence of the element chromium. Ruby is the birthstone for July and the gem for the 15th and 40th anniversaries.
Sapphire is a gemstone variety of the mineral corundum. It is typically blue in color, but also appears in a rainbow of shades. These sapphires called “fancy sapphires” and are rare. Sapphire is the birthstone for September and the gem of the 5th and 45th anniversaries.
Emerald is a precious gemstone and a variety of the mineral beryl naturally colored green by trace amounts of chromium and sometimes vanadium. Emerald is regarded as the traditional birthstone for May as well as the traditional gemstone for the astrological signs of Taurus, Gemini, and sometimes Cancer.
Aquamarine is the green-blue to blue of the mineral beryl. Its name comes from the Latin for seawater and it was said to calm waves and keep sailors safe at sea. Aquamarine is the birthstone for March and the gem of the 19th wedding anniversary.
Citrine is rare in nature. It is often confused with topaz as they share the same hues and colors. As with most other quartzes its color, durability and affordability makes it the top selling yellow, orange gem. Citrine is a birthstone for November.