Don't forget to use WELCOME50 for $50 off $500 - OR - WELCOME100 for $100 off $1000*

Glossary A : 50 - 100

Art Nouveau

Posted by Gleem & Go at

The Art Nouveau period was popular for its natural flowing designs, which were inspired by leaves, vines, and other organic shapes. The Art Nouveau period peaked around 1890 - 1905. Often incorrectly referred to as "Art Deco", the primary difference is that Art Deco characteristics were angular and geometric, whereas Art Nouveau was a period primarily marked by the flowing natural organic shapes. Art Nouveau pieces are characterized by curves, especially depicting long-haired, sensual women.

Read more →


Arts And Crafts

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Arts and Crafts was an artistic movement that produced hand-crafted pieces toward the end of the 1800's.  Pieces purposely look hand-made, incorporating hammer marks and simple cabochon settings.  The Arts and Crafts movement also revived the art of enamel.  A prominent Arts and Crafts jeweller was C.R. Ashbee (1863-1942); Ashbee founded The Guild of Handicraft in 1888.  Other important Arts and Crafts jewelers included Arthur Gaskin (1862-1928), Georgina Gaskin (1868-1934, Arthur's wife), Fred T.  Partridge, John Paul Cooper (1869-1933), Bernard Cuzner (1877-1956), Henry Wilson (1864-1934), Alexander Fisher (1864-1936), and Edgar Simpson.

Read more →


Assay

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An assay is a test of the purity of an alloy.  A tiny piece of metal is scraped from the piece and the percentage of gold or silver is determined.  Official assay offices determine whether a piece qualifies for an appropriate hallmark.

Read more →


Asscher, Joseph

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Joseph Asscher was an eminent diamond cutter who cut the 3,106 carat Cullinan diamond.  Asscher worked in Amsterdam.  In 1902, his company, the Asscher Diamond Co. , developed and patented the Asscher cut, a squarish step cut with an almost octagonal outline.  This new cut enhanced the fire and light of the stone; it had a small table, a high crown, wide step facets, a deep pavilion and square culet.  This cut became very popular in Art Deco jewelry and was a forerunner of the emerald cut.  Recently, the Royal Asscher Diamond Co.  resumed production of the original Asscher cut...

Read more →


Asterism

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An asterism is a star-like luminous effect that reflects light in some gemstones, like star sapphires and star garnets.

Read more →


Aurora Borealis

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aurora borealis (meaning "northern lights") rhinestones have a special iridescent finish that shines with many colors.  The iridescent surface is a result of a very thin layer of metallic atoms that have been deposited on the lower surface of the stone.  This process was invented in 1955 by the Swarovski company together with Christian Dior.

Read more →


Australian Ruby

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An Australian ruby is actually a pyrope garnet (and not a ruby at all).

Read more →


Aventurine

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aventurine (sometimes known as goldstone and sometimes mis-spelled adventurine) is a shimmering quartz stone that ranges in color from yellow to red to light green to light brown.  The shimmer is caused by tiny metallic particles (mica) within the stone.

Read more →


Aventurine Feldspar

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aventurine feldspar is also called Sunstone (a variety of oligoclase).  This gemstone varies from golden to orange to red-brown, and can be transparent or translucent.  Sunstone is metallic-looking due to sparkling red, orange or green crystalline inclusions (these are hematite or goethite crystals).  Sunstone is found in Canada, the USA (in Oregon), India, Norway, and Russia.  This brittle stone has a hardness of 6 and a specific gravity of 2.63-2.67.  Sunstone is not enhanced.

Read more →


Aventurine Glass

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aventurine glass (sometimes spelled adventurine glass) is a shimmering glass that contains tiny metallic particles (copper flakes) within it.  The process of making aventurine glass was invented in Venice, Italy, around 1700.

Read more →


Aventurine Quartz

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aventurine quartz is a type of quartz that has sparkling flecks (includions) of mica or iron.  This colors of this stone include red-brown, yellow, gray, and green.  Aventurine quartz has a hardness of 7 and a specific gravity of 2.64-2.69.  This stone is usually cut with a flat or rounded surface to maximize its sparkle.  Aventurine quartz is found in India, Russia, and Tanzania.

Read more →


Awabi Pearl

Posted by Gleem & Go at

The Japanese name for abalone pearls is Awabi pearls.

Read more →


Axinite

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Axinite is an unusual, lustrous stone that is brown, yellow, blue, green or gray.  Violet axinite is rare (and from Tasmania).  It has both transparent and translucent varieties.  Axinite is dichroic.  Axinite has a hardness of 7 and a specific gravity of 3.3.  Axinite is a boro-silicate of aluminum and calcium.  It is used only as a mineral specimen and not in jewelry.

Read more →


Axis Of Symmetry

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An axis of symmetry (also called a rotational axis) is an imaginary line around which an object can be rotated a certain number of degrees and look like the original shape.  When two planes of symmetry intersect, they form a straight line, which is an axis of symmetry.  See more in the entry on crystal systems.

Read more →


Azurite

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Azurite is a beautiful copper-based blue mineral that is often used in jewelry.  The color ranges from very deep blue to pale blue.  Azurite has also been used as a dye for paints and luxury fabrics.  Azurite is hydrated copper carbonate; its chemical formula is Cu3(CO3)2(OH)2.  Malachite (another copper-based mineral) and azurite are often found together.  Azurite has a hardness of 3. 5 to 4 (relatively soft) and a specific gravity of 3.7-3.9.  Azurite is found in massive monoclinic crystals in Australia the southwestern USA, France, Mexico, Morocco, Nambia, Zaire, and Europe.  Azurite is sometimes coated with a colorless wax...

Read more →


Arkansas Stone

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Arkansas stone is an abrasive used in jewelry making.  It is used to smooth metals.

Read more →


Arkansas Diamond

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An Arkansas diamond is actually a rock crystal (and not a diamond at all).

Read more →


Arizona Spinel

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An Arizona spinel is actually a garnet (and not a spinel at all).

Read more →


Arizona Ruby

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An Arizona ruby is actually a pyrope garnet (and not a ruby at all).

Read more →


Arctic Opal

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Arctic opal is a blue-green stone that is a mixture of azurite and malachite; it is not a type of opal at all.  Arctic opal is mined in the Wrangle Mountains and the Chugach Mountains of Alaska, USA (near Anchorage).

Read more →


Arcade Setting

Posted by Gleem & Go at

An arcade setting (also called coronet or châton setting) is one in which the stone is held in by many metal claws around a metal ring.

Read more →


Aquamarine

Posted by Gleem & Go at

Aquamarine is a transparent, light blue or sea-green stone that is porous.  Today, blue aquamarines are more highly valued, but this was not true in the past, when sea-green stones were prized.  Heat-treatment turns greenish stones bluer.  The best aquamarines come from Brazil.  Large aquamarines are relatively common.  Aquamarines are usually faceted but when they are cabochon cut, a cat's eye effect or asterism may appear.  Aquamarines belong to the beryl family of stones.  Aquamarine has a hardness of 7. 5-8 and a specific gravity of 2.65-2.85.

Read more →


Art Deco

Posted by Gleem & Go at

The Art Deco period ranged from 1925 - 1940s and was known for its lavish designs in geometric lines and shapes. Art Deco style originated in Paris, France.  Art Deco pieces are characterized by geometric lines and angles, with very few curves.  This art movement eventually became bolder and evolved into Art Moderne.

Read more →