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Spinel

Sources: Tanzania, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Burma
Hardness: 8
Common treatments: none

Spinel is one of Nomad's favorite gemstones because of its rich variations of color and strong crystal properties such as its brilliance and hardness.

The hot pink and red crystals from Tanzania, like the famous Mahenge Spinel, which came on the market in the last decade showcase a fiery hue unseen in any other gemstone.

Deep in the mountains of Northern Vietnam you can find Spinel in an array of romantic pastel hues: violet, pink, lavender and blue. The most sought after variety of Spinel is the rare cobalt spinel which displays a unique electric blue known as "windex blue."

Spinel is the stone that made ruby famous. As Burmese spinel are found in the same localities as ruby, they were often mistaken for each other. Spinel was not recognized as a separate gem until the end of the 18th century, in fact, many famous "rubies" in ancient crown jewels around the world are actually spinels.