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  • Writer's pictureהנהלת הבורסה

Sapphire, a dream in blue...

Sapphire is a gemstone belonging to the variety of colors of the mineral corundum.

A red gemstone quality corundum is called a "ruby" (ruby) and the other gemstone quality corundum shades are called a "sapphire".


Sapphire is the birthstone of the month of September. In good quality, it is a rare and very expensive stone, with many imitations. Aluminum oxide sapphire has a special feature - in its pure state it is completely colorless.


The Origin of the name Sapphire

There are several versions regarding the origin of the name. One version suggests that the source is in the Greek word spirus which means "blue stone" although it is estimated that it is not the same stone. Another source of origin is from Sanskrit - "branch" a word that means "the one who is sacred to the planet Saturn".



Prominent features of the sapphire

The sapphire is made of aluminum oxide, which in its pure state is colorless. The color of the sapphire is caused by the presence of tiny amounts of iron oxide and titanium oxide. The amounts of titanium in aluminum oxide play an important role in the deep blue color composition of the sapphire. The beautiful color "royal blue" is the most sought after and expensive.

Good quality blue sapphire is a rare and very expensive stone and therefore has many imitations. Blue natural gems that are similar in color like blue spinel, blue tourmaline, tanzanite, aolyte and even glass try to be a substitute for the precious sapphire.

The sapphire stone and the ruby ​​stone are almost completely identical in chemical composition and crystallization form.

Due to the crystal structure of the sapphire there is a double refraction of light and therefore great expertise is required in finding the right polishing direction for the stone. Only in a certain direction will a beautiful stone with a beautiful color be obtained from the crystal.



Sapphire in Judaism

“You shall make a choshen of judgment, the work of a master weaver. You shall make it like the work of the ephod; of gold, blue, purple, and crimson wool,…And you shall fill into it stone fillings, four rows of stones…The second row: nofech, sappir, and yahalom…” (Shemot - Exodus - Chapter 28)

We can not know today which stone was indeed embedded in the High Priest's Sense and scholars assume that it was actually Lapis Lazuli, a blue stone that was found in our area in ancient times. Lapis Lazuli is a much softer stone than sapphire and easier to process. Pliny the Elder, a philosopher from the first century AD, also described the "sapphire" as a stone similar to Lapis Lazuli: a blue stone with dots of gold, meaning not the sapphire we know today.

According to the Talmud, which describes the flags of the tribes of Israel and assumes that the flags of the tribes were parallel to the colors of the stones, the sapphire is associated with the tribe of Issachar. In the Great Desert, Parsha B, Mark 7.

According to Midrash Talpiot, the book by Rabbi Eliyahu HaCohen from the 17th-18th century who lived in Izmir, Turkey, the sapphire stone has a property that heals the eyes and is good for any pain and swelling in the body: “… In it as a sapphire mirror the shape of a chair. And the azure color of humility and lowliness is not proud of redness and vegetables. And its virtue is to enlighten the eyes and therefore it is passed on to the eyes, and the Torah also enlightens the eyes, and this stone will be useful for all pain and swelling wherever it is in the body. "

The sapphire stone is also mentioned in the Bible in the books of Ezekiel, Job and Lamentations.



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