Star Sapphire

Sri Lanka
Ex. Marvin Rockey
Gems, 7.44 mm, 3.00 ct
Start Time: 06/06/2024 7:30:00 pm (CDT)
End Time: 06/13/2024 7:00:00 pm (CDT)
Auction Closed

Item Description

Here we have a classic Star Sapphire from Sri Lanka. "Star" gems occupy a special category of gemstones that display a multi-rayed star (typically 6 or 4 rays) that floats on the surface when the gem is viewed under a strong concentrated light source. When it comes to "star" gems, Sapphire is almost assuredly the best-known example. These gems are cut when a piece of Sapphire rough is positioned by a skilled gem cutter to correctly orient the thin, fibrous inclusions inside of the Sapphire at the correct angle to properly show off the "legs" of the star when the piece is polished. When these inclusions are numerous enough, they allow light to be reflected in such a way that a six-ray star floats across the top of the stone when rotated in the light. It is an amazing phenomenon (called asterism) that is only seen in a few gems around the world. This stone is a good representative Star Sapphire from Sri Lanka. The actual "legs" of the star in this stone are decent, but you really do need a concentrated light to see them properly. The stone has a dark almost metallic bronze hue with a slight greenish-golden metallic overtone, and is opaque for all intents and purposes.
This stone is from the estate of former Phoenix area dealer Marvin Rockey. Rockey's Gems was a significant business in the early days of Arizona lapidary material, and he was a prominent dealer and buyer in the Arizona area of local lapidary and carving material from throughout the state, including Bisbee, the Ray Mine, Miami mines, and the Peridot finds on Indian lands in the 1950s-1970s. This stone was kept back from the retail stock for its quality and beauty, in a tray of special material, and was found in his estate (sold to us only recently). Today, these are not only rarely seen but of a highly desirable old quality, and sought after by collectors and gem / jewelry enthusiasts alike.

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