Citrine Stone | Yellow Variety of Quartz
1. About the Mineral Citrine
2. Traditional Birthstone for November
3. More Facts About Citrine
4. Our Collection of Rocks and Minerals
5. Read More
About the Mineral Citrine
Natural citrine is one of the most valuable varieties of the mineral quartz. Stones are transparent to translucent, exhibit a vitreous lustre and the exact cause of the subtle yellow to rich orange colour is still somewhat of a mystery. What is known about the colour of citrine is that trace amounts of aluminium in some stones cause the quartz to turn yellow. Scientists admit they still do not know for certain exactly what causes the colour in this relatively rare mineral.
When amethyst which is the purple variety of quartz is heated it also turns yellow and a significant amount of citrine being sold commercially is in fact heated amethyst. Although not completely natural it's widely accepted as being the next best thing and few people will even known whether their stone is natural citrine or amethyst which has been heat treated. It's usually quite easy to tell the difference because the colour of natural citrine tends to be more of a pale yellow instead of rich orange.
The name citrine comes from the French word 'citron' meaning lemon.
During the first and second centuries AD both the Greeks and Romans used citrine stones for intaglios whilst in ancient times it was worn as protection against snake venom and evil thoughts. Historically little is known about citrine because there are few references to the stone which is perhaps because of its rarity.
Citrine (heated amethyst) Tumbled Stones. Photo; Stone Mania ©
Traditional Birthstone for November
Citrine is the traditional birthstone for the month of November but on the modern birthstone chart it's the alternative to topaz. Although some coloured varieties of quartz are sometimes mistaken for topaz, they're two completely different minerals. The reason for the confusion may be because for many years all translucent brown orange and yellow coloured gemstones were commonly referred to as topaz. Even after the discovery that some stones had a completely different geological make-up, it was some time before the correct names started being widely used.
More Citrine Facts
Like most varieties of quartz citrine grades 7 on Mohs scale of mineral hardness which makes it a particularly suitable for lapidary purposes. When used as a gemstone it tends to be faceted which maximises its brilliance and the way the stone is cut can further increase its value.
Popular for use in crystal healing the stone citrine is said to help with digestion and the removal of toxins from within the body. It symbolizes light-heartedness, joy and happiness and influences the areas of education, business pursuits and interpersonal relationships. It's particularly useful for smoothing out or pacifying family or group problems. Along with the mineral kyanite it will not accumulate or retain negative energy hence never needs to be cleansed.
Deposits of natural citrine can be found in Madagascar, Spain, Uruguay, on the Isle of Arran in Scotland, the Ural mountains of Russia and the USA although the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul is currently the world's largest supplier.
Natural Citrine Cluster. Collier Creek Mine, Arkansas, USA
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