Friday, March 7, 2014

Kashmir Sapphire

The most famous sapphires in the world are from Kashmir, and they are extraordinarily rare.

New sapphires are rarely discovered in Kashmir, and most of the material that exists was discovered more than 100 years ago. Kashmir sapphires are highly valued because the best specimens have a superb cornflower blue colour and a sleepy quality (due to rutile inclusions) that has been described as "blue velvet."
Sapphires were first discovered in Kashmir around 1880. The story is that a landslide in the Padar region uncovered the deposit, high up in the Himalayas at about 4,500 meters.

Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, lying mainly in a valley between India and Pakistan. A region of great beauty, Kashmir was a princely state in the 19th century. It became a disputed territory after the partition of the subcontinent in 1947, when it joined India rather than Pakistan. The dispute continues to this day.
Between 1882 and 1887 the mine was very productive, yielding sapphire crystals of exceptional quality and size.
By 1887 declining production led the Maharajah of Kashmir to request geological assistance from the government of British India, in the hope of finding more material. The British geologist found the original mine to be exhausted, and turned his survey to placer deposits elsewhere in the valley.

Exploration failed to uncover new sapphire. Over the years geological surveys were mounted and mining efforts undertaken during the three months of summer free from snow. But the marvels that came out of the original mine were never matched, and today the area is mostly under control of Muslim guerillas.
Richelieu Sapphires
Sapphire earrings with sapphires of 26.66 and 20.88 carats; $8,372,094 ($176,106 per carat) at Sotheby's Geneva November 2013 sale.

Star of Kashmir
Cushion-shaped sapphire of 19.88 carats set in a diamond ring; $3,483,017 ($175,202 per carat) at Christie's Geneva May 2013 sale.



See ------> http://pennystockjournal.blogspot.ca/2013/11/padparadscha-sapphires.html

See -----> http://pennystockjournal.blogspot.ca/2013/12/ceylon-sapphires.html