The History Behind Two Pink Gemstones
Posted on July 23 2013
Many years ago, I saw a pink kunzite ring and fell in love with its delicate hue and the sense of gracefulness it conveyed. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, they say; when you find it, it captures your attention, whether it’s in jewelry, art, or nature. This was one of my very first experiences with pink gemstones, and it is a pleasant memory that has stayed with me.
Kunzite, as you may know, is a gemstone with a color ranging from pink to lilac and was discovered fairly recently in 1902. It was named kunzite after George Frederick Kunz, a noted mineralogist and the chief jeweler for Tiffany & Co. at that time. In fact, Kunz was such an avid mineralogist that he became a vice president at Tiffany by the time he was 23. He wrote over 300 articles during his lifetime and was an advocate for establishing the international carat as a unit of measure for diamonds and gems. (It’s hard to imagine that not being a standard.)
I discovered this while looking into morganite, another pink gemstone, named after the banker J. P. Morgan. When morganite was first discovered on an island off the coast of Madagascar in 1910, Kunz was the one who suggested that this gemstone, known then as simply pink beryl, be named after Morgan, his client. As a hobby, Morgan was a serious gem collector, and Kunz helped him assemble his famous collections. Morgan’s first collection was shown at the 1889 World’s Fair in Paris — known for the debut of the Eiffel Tower, incidentally — and won two golden awards.
It was quite interesting for me to learn about this connection between Kunz and Morgan, as I love both gemstones. It’s kind of funny to think of pink gemstones being named after men, but it makes perfect sense when you understand their devotion to and passion for gemology.
Morganite hues range from light pink to rose to peach. There is something about a light pink gemstone set within the rosy pink of colored gold that can be quite captivating. That’s why I’m a big fan of our collection of rose gold morganite engagement rings. As each ring is made from scratch, if you have a special request for the hue of the center morganite gemstone, we will do our best to accommodate you.