Rare and valuable minerals

How to distinguish real morganite from a fake?

Morganite stone is a rather rare variety of beryl. Due to its beautiful color, high transparency and ease of processing, the stone is used in jewelry. The mineral may contain long cavities running parallel to the edges, as well as various inclusions (gas-liquid, flat cirrus, etc.).

Detection

The first studies of morganite date back to 1908. Almost simultaneously, the stone was discovered in the Urals and in the USA. In Russia, the mineral was named Vorobievite in honor of the geologist Vorobiev who died on the expedition. And in America, the stone was named after the financier and entrepreneur John Morgan.

physical properties

  • Color: soft pink.
  • Hardness on the Mohs scale: 7,5–8 points.
  • Density: 2,6–2,9 g/cm3.

Manganese gives the pink color to crystals. The composition also includes cesium: if it is in excess, the stone acquires a crimson color. There are also peach-colored, reddish and light purple morganites. But pink stones are the most highly valued. Under the influence of X-rays, natural samples are painted bright red – this makes it possible to identify a fake.

The mineral is resistant to sunlight. Natural morganites are characterized by the optical phenomenon of pleochroism – a change in color in the light when viewed from different angles.

Deposits and production

Morganite is mined in South Asia (Pakistan, Afghanistan), in small quantities in the USA and Madagascar, as well as in Brazil and Mozambique.

It is found in pegmatite veins, in the rock it is adjacent to quartz, feldspars, spodumene and micas.

Application

Morganite is inlaid with various jewelry: earrings, rings, necklaces, etc. Basically, the stone is given a cabochon cut, which allows you to maximize its brilliance. Jewelers prefer to use raw materials weighing more than 5 carats, since the pink color is practically indistinguishable in small stones. The cost of especially rare specimens reaches $200 per carat.

Jewelry shopping

Morganite, the most beautiful of beryls, is of interest both to collectors and investors, as well as to connoisseurs of precious and jewelry stones. Gold, mostly white, is always chosen as a setting for this stone, and colorless diamonds are used as companions.

On the website and in the company stores of the Moscow Jewelry Factory, gold earrings, rings and necklaces with natural morganite of different shades and diamonds are presented. Jewelry is included in the Royal and Empire collections. In the catalog you can see photos and videos of jewelry before purchasing. Many products have discounts of up to 55%.

Orders placed in the online store are delivered free of charge to your home and to MUZ salons.

Morganite analogs

Other minerals that may be confused with morganite include common rose quartz, pink topaz, and rubellite (a type of tourmaline).

How to distinguish natural morganite from a fake

Counterfeiting morganite is a very rare occurrence due to the complexity of the process. It is a mistake to consider artificially grown crystals to be fake, since they have the same structure and properties as natural stones. However, morganite synthesized in laboratory conditions has lower refractive index and specific gravity constants compared to natural ones, and under a microscope the herringbone structure (chevron structure) characteristic of a hydrothermal sample is visible.

The belonging of a sample to zircons is indicated by such properties as high dispersion and often visually bifurcated ribs. Pink topaz, compared to morganite, is more saturated, sometimes turning purple or red. Rose quartz is slightly cloudy.

Glass can be used as a cheap imitation. It will heat up in your hand quite quickly, which cannot be said about natural stone. In addition, glass counterfeits are characterized by bright coloring unevenly distributed over the surface of the stone. The hardness of morganite is higher than that of glass, so the latter is easy to scratch.

Morganite in astrology and the magical properties of the stone

The mineral is endowed with a number of magical abilities. It is believed that it gives peace and tranquility, helps make dreams come true, and attracts inspiration. Like many pink stones, morganite is credited with the ability to bring success in love affairs by increasing the attractiveness of the owner of the stone to the opposite sex.

Morganite protects those born under the signs of the element of Water. Among the representatives of other elements for whom this stone is suitable in its properties, it is worth noting Gemini and Libra. It is these signs of the zodiac that Morganite inspires, stimulates active activity on their part, gives good luck in all endeavors and peace of mind. Representatives of other zodiac signs are not prohibited from wearing jewelry with this stone.

https://miuz.ru/guide/stones/jewelrystones/morganit/morganit-v-yuvelirnykh-ukrasheniyakh/
Morganite in jewelry

Morganite in jewelry Morganite stone is a rather rare variety of beryl. Due to its beautiful color, high transparency and ease of processing, the stone is used in jewelry. The mineral may contain long cavities emanating steam.

To help you choose the perfect morganite for yourself, we’ve put together a buyer’s guide that simply answers the tough questions that inevitably pop up once you’ve made the decision to buy. Let’s figure out what colors there are, which cut shape is preferable, why similar specimens have different prices, which stone will be more expensive and which will be cheaper. The result of our article will be an indication of the average market value of morganite, depending on pricing factors. We will also consider such controversial points as how to distinguish real morganite from possible imitations.

Colors and types of morganite

Morganite is a transparent gemstone, one of the color varieties of the mineral beryl. Another name, common in Russia, but practically unknown in the world, is sparrow. We talked about the history of the discovery of pink beryl to the world in the encyclopedia (link). It is distinguished by a pastel pink color scheme, including pink, orange-pink, brownish-pink, and peach. The color of beryl is resistant to sunlight and is associated with the presence of impurities of manganese, cesium and lithium.

Conventionally, the morganite palette is divided into warm and cold shades. Warm ones contain a slight orange component, these are orange-pink, peach and cream colors, up to strong brownish pink, a border color. If you are in doubt about which Morganite color to choose, pay attention to the features of your appearance. Such “warm” morganites go well with high-carat yellow gold, look elegant and are suitable for people with a tan or slightly dark, olive skin, brown and greenish eyes. It is necessary to mention the golden-brown beryls coming from new deposits in Madagascar. Many sellers consider them to be morganites, but these stones do not have the distinct pink tint that distinguishes morganites from other varieties of beryl. We classify such stones as beryl.

The cool palette of morganite implies the absence of an orange tint. These are really pure pink colors, ranging from a very light pink, almost colorless, to a rich, bright neon pink. The latter is extremely rare and does not reach large sizes. Bright pink morganite is comparable in color to pink sapphires. Light and very light pink beryls without peach color are found many times more often than saturated ones. Morganites of cool shades are indeed presented on the market in much smaller quantities than peach ones, but they are also valued higher. They are suitable for people with a Northern European type of appearance: fair skin and hair, blue or gray eyes. They are set mainly in white gold and surrounded by snow-white diamonds.

The cost of a carat depends on the saturation of morganite. In this regard, pricing is similar to aquamarine. We distinguish three categories of saturation: light and very light (light, very light), medium saturation (medium) and high saturation (strong). Highly saturated morganites are valued higher than light stones, which are the majority on the market. Also, peach, orange and brownish tones reduce the price.

For light stones, there is a relationship between saturation and the size of the cut stone. Thus, small stones, up to 2 carats, look almost colorless, and with increasing mass, the saturation increases. For stones of medium and strong saturation, this rule is less obvious.

Ennobling

Morganites are sometimes subjected to refinement; mainly two methods are used: heat treatment and irradiation. Do not be alarmed, these methods are absolutely safe for health. They are used to eliminate brownish and orangish tints, to convert colors from warm colors to more valuable cool colors, and to improve color characteristics. The fact of refining does not affect the cost. Heated morganite costs the same as natural color, all other parameters being equal.

This is partly due to the fact that there is no single generally accepted technology with a predictable result, which is explained by the different content of impurities in the samples, and partly due to the fact that today there are no unambiguous signs of refining, which makes establishing the fact of heat treatment and irradiation difficult to achieve.

Cleanliness

Jewelry morganites, like aquamarines, are mostly of high purity. The reason lies in the large size of cut quality pink beryl crystals. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) categorizes morganites as Grade I for colored stones – usually clear.

Thus, the purity of the stone directly affects the cost. When selecting stones for the catalog, we first look at the purity of the stones presented, and if the samples contain visible and noticeable defects, we reject them. The best cleanliness is “visually clean”, “clean under a magnifying glass”. This gradation corresponds to the VVS-VS class on the GIA scale.

The only exceptions are bright pink and neon pink morganites. For them, the presence of inclusions is rather the norm, this is due to the fact that crystals of this color usually contain inclusions. Therefore, for good painting, the presence of a small number of defects is acceptable.

Weight

The mass of faceted morganite is usually limited by the size of the raw material and common sense, since the crystals sometimes reach large sizes.

Morganites are not cut en masse for coating, as this is impractical. In small sizes, stones do not reveal color, and due to the low dispersion value, they do not play brightly, losing in this regard to pink sapphires and garnets.

Small stones weighing 2-3 carats, set in silver, are loved by fans of birthday stones, a trend in Western countries based on the selection of a gem depending on the month of birth. Such morganites are usually light in color and do not have a distinct color.

The color begins to be visible at a weight of 4 carats and above. Stones of 7-15 carats are especially good for jewelry. Morganites are a real joy and a find for lovers of large gemstones in earrings and rings. Considered a rare gemstone, large size morganite is relatively affordable. Due to the low density characteristic of beryl, morganites weigh significantly less, for example, sapphires of the same size, and for earrings this fact is sometimes of paramount importance when, when creating a design, jewelers fight for every gram of the product so that the earrings are comfortable to wear.

Therefore, even a 20-carat morganite will not look too large in a pendant. Of course, if it suits your taste.

The cost of a carat of morganite is influenced by the weight of a particular specimen. For example, the cost of 1 carat of medium-saturated peach-colored beryl for a 2-carat and a 10-carat specimen will differ by 2 times.

Cutting

Historically, Morganites were most often cut in the shape of pears (drops) and ovals. Morganites are perfectly assembled in pairs and sets of large, more than 10 carats, stones, which allows you to create unique sets of jewelry. Not every gem can allow jewelers not to limit their imagination to the size of the stone. If the budget allows, almost any girl can choose morganite for a full set of ring/pendant/earrings that will suit her color type, based on her appearance. We talked about the use of morganites in the works of famous jewelry brands in this article (link).

Less common cut shapes are cushion, square and rectangular. It is visually more stable, since it is based on a quadrangle, perfect for men.

Much less commonly, morganites are given step cuts (octagon, baguette, asscher), radiant, heart, and briolettes. Round cuts are practically never found, except for small, up to 5 carats, images. Fancy cut for morganite is very rare.

When purchasing, pay attention to the visual perception of the cut stone, how it plays, how it shines; the game is best revealed in dynamics. Place the selected specimen on your hand, see how the color of the stone combines with the color of your skin, if you choose for yourself. By smoothly shaking your hand, as in our videos, in diffuse daylight (not sunlight) and artificial lighting, you can see how the stone will look in the product. Try to choose daytime to view the stone, when you can bring the morganite to the window. At the same time, make sure that there are no bright or, on the contrary, dark objects nearby (including floors, walls), which can be reflected in the stone and distort the perception of color and cut.

Pay attention to whether there is a large “window” in the stone that impairs the play of light on the edges. In pairs, different sizes of areas of the stones are allowed, and a slight difference in color, after all, morganite is a rare gemstone, but it should be really insignificant.

If the stone looks dull and does not shine, this may indicate an average or even low quality of polishing, in which part of the light is scattered when it “enters” the stone and is reflected in less quantity from the edges of the pavilion.

If rainbow flashes appear in Morganite when moving, this indicates masterfully selected angles of the crown and pavilion facets and the skill of the cutter, which generally leads to high quality cutting, since the dispersion of the beryl mineral, and, in particular, its pink variety, is low, and it requires knowledge and extensive experience to maximize the beauty of cut morganite.

Price

Finally, we come to the question, how much does a Morganite stone cost? Obviously, there is no clear answer to this question. The market price of precious stones is determined by many circumstances, including the economic situation in the world, the discovery of new deposits, fashionable jewelry trends, the behavior of leading market players and precedents for sales at major auctions.

We will consider the dependence of cost on the characteristics of the stone itself. Let us remind you that color and its components, weight, purity and quality of processing most influence the cost.

The morganite grading system is not simple, but it is based on a simple axiom: more attractive and rarer things increase the value of the stone, and less attractive and more common ones lower the value. In order to illustrate this principle, let’s consider an example, take as a starting point a visually clean stone, in which barely noticeable inclusions are acceptable, with a good quality Asian cut, and consider two colors – peach and pink of medium saturation at different weights: 5, 10 and 15 carat. We get approximate carat prices:

  • 5 carat: peach – $60, pink – $200
  • 10 carat: peach – $80, pink – $300
  • 15 carat: peach $90, pink – from $320

This means that a five-carat pure pink stone will cost approximately the same as a 12-carat peach stone, at $1000.

As can be seen from the example, the difference in price between morganites of different shades is quite significant. Light morganites are cheaper, rich ones are more expensive. If there are significant flaws in the cut, for example, there is a “window” in more than 30% of the stone’s area, when looking across the platform, the stone costs 10-15% less. Conversely, the owner of an excellent cut of the European level will increase in price by at least 20-30% of the acceptable Asian quality.

For specimens of morganite that are unique in size and best in color, the price is assigned on an individual basis.

Can Morganite be considered a gemstone?

There are two answers: yes and no, and both are correct. It all depends on the point of view from which you view this gem. From a legal point of view, morganite is not a precious stone, and it can be called semi-precious. From a gemological point of view, yes, it is, like many other stones.

If we consider the classification of Melnikov E.P., morganite belongs to jewelry stones of the second order. We talk about classifications in this article.

Morganite deposits

Morganite deposits primarily include Brazil, Madagascar, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and the USA. Finds and manifestations of gem-quality morganite have been noted in Australia, Namibia, Tajikistan and a number of other countries. Mining of morganite is usually associated with pegmatite bodies. Let us explain that pegmatites are a geological term meaning a type of occurrence of rocks of igneous origin, the main feature of which is the very large and even colossal size of the crystals of the constituent minerals. They are also characterized by a rich and varied composition and, therefore, the presence of many minerals, therefore, in such bodies, beryls of various types, topazes, and quartz can be mined along the way. For this reason, morganites can be found in deposits associated with emeralds, aquamarines, green beryl, heliodor, and topaz. Morganites are found in emerald mines, for example, in Zimbabwe (St. Anne mine) and Australia (Aga Khon deposit). Brazilian morganites are a classic; most specimens of the mineral presented on the market were mined in the mines of Brazil. In the state of Minas Gerais, famous for all connoisseurs of gems, there are two large deposits: in Corredo do Urucum and in the Itambacuri region. Another famous place for mining pink beryl is Resplendor. One of the largest places for morganite mining is Madagascar (Malagasy Republic). Jewelry quality raw materials are supplied by the districts of Sahatani, Tsilaizina, Maharitra, Ampangabe and Anjanabonoina. In Russia, sparrowite, suitable for cutting, is found in the Middle Urals in pegmatites, along with other varieties of the mineral beryl (aquamarine, heliodor and noble beryl).

How to distinguish morganite from a fake?

In the mass and serial production of jewelry, not only natural precious and semi-precious stones are used, but also imitations made from cheaper materials. Their external (visual) characteristics resemble more expensive and rare natural stone. This is not always a fake; most often the label indicates that imitation has been used.

This trend has not passed unnoticed and is continuing. Pinkish or cream-colored glass and even plastic are often used as cheap imitations. They are distinguished by an obvious bright color, unevenly distributed throughout the volume of the “stone” in the form of streaks, so-called streaks, and uneven areas, high fragility, leading to chips and micro-punctures on the edges and numerous scratches on the surface of the edges. And when viewed through a 10x magnifying glass, you can observe rather large air bubbles, round or elongated in one direction. When viewed in polarized light using a gemological polariscope, the glass exhibits a characteristic pattern of isotropic material (the stone remains dark when rotated 360 degrees) or exhibits anomalous anisotropy (beams, dark and light zones). Sitall (sitall) morganite is a modern material, essentially glass, but more durable, and in its characteristics as close as possible to natural imitated stone. Lines of shades are already appearing in glass ceramics that correspond to the color gradation of natural morganite.

Also worth mentioning is synthetic pink beryl morganite, also known as hydrothermal morganite. This is a high-quality analogue, corresponding in structure and chemical composition to a natural mineral. However, there are signs that allow you to distinguish synthetic morganite from the real thing. To give a pink color in synthetics, titanium impurities are used, and the natural color is caused by manganese. Also, morganite synthesized in laboratory conditions has lower refractive index and specific gravity constants compared to natural ones, and when viewed through a microscope, it reveals a characteristic “herringbone” structure (“chevron structure”).

Let’s compare sparrowstone with other gems of similar colors: quartz, sapphire, tourmaline, zircon, topaz, kunzites, garnets. Rose quartz is distinguished by a slight haze, which gives it a special charm; it is relatively cheap, but it is impossible for the trained eye to confuse it with morganite. Light tourmaline and kunzite are most similar in appearance to morganite; their prices are approximately in the same range. Topaz and pink garnets are more saturated in color, sometimes turning purple or reddish. Zircons are distinguished by high dispersion and often visually bifurcated ribs.

To be completely sure, if you have any doubts, you can contact a reputable gemological laboratory, where expert gemologists will conduct all the necessary analyzes and studies and determine the mineral type and natural origin. You can order an expert opinion or certificate for morganite, which will describe the main parameters of the specimen.

If you like this stone, you can select and buy morganite in the stone catalog. If you have any questions about the article, write to our email.

In the photo: a set of three morganites, Gem Lovers collection

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