Elias – Tanzanites

Tanzanite, 1000 times rarer than diamonds

Tanzanite is the jewel in the crown of Elias jewellery

The gemstone discoveries in East Africa, during the 1960’s, transformed the jewellery world like never before. New varieties, new colours, and new variation on existing species made that decade the most exciting time in the recent gemstone history.

No gemstone discovered in East Africa has had more impact on the world’s gemstone market than Tanzanite. 1000 times rarer than diamonds.

One the most beautiful and least known gemstones in the world; Tanzanite is more rate than diamonds and globally considered to be a finer gem, in clarity and colour than a Sapphire.

Tanzanite is rare. In fact, this beautiful blue violet gem is beyond rate. With just an estimated decade of supply remaining in the mine, as time passes Tanzanite becomes ever more precious.

Tanzanite is found in only one place on earth, deep in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, East Africa. The entire area mined is only four-square kilometres wide.

Intense geological research has shown Tanzanite’s geology to be totally unique. The chance of it occurring outside the current production area (and its immediate vicinity) is less than a million to one. So Tanzanite is rare in both a gemmological and geographic sense. In fact, its single source and limited supply makes it at least one thousand times rarer than a diamond.

TANZANITE TIMELINES 1967 – Discovered in Tanzania

It was the Maasai tribesman Ali Juuyawatu who first shared his blue-violet crystal find with Manuel de Souza, a tailor by profession and prospector by passion who happened to be in the region in search of Rubies. At first it was thought the stones were unusually vibrant Sapphires, but it was soon confirmed that the new gemstones were more complex than a Sapphire, with a colour more alluring and exotic. Manuel de Souza had no idea that he’d encountered a gemstone the world had never seen… one that remained unnamed.

1968 – Christened “Tanzanite” by Tiffany & Co.

The beauty of Tanzanite did note elude the savvy marketing of Henry B. Platt, great grandson of Louis Comfort Tiffany and later President and Chairman of New York’s Tiffany & Co. It was Platt who name the stone “Tanzanite” and who introduced it to the world with great fanfare at Tiffany & Co in 1968.

2001 – Tanzanite is ranked 2nd favourite coloured gemstone in the USA after the Sapphire.

Demand for Tanzanite has rocketed in recent years, outstripping sale of all other coloured gemstones. A thousand times rarer than diamonds and with a little over a decade of mine life remaining, Tanzanite is the fashion gem of the millennium.

2002 – Tanzanite is named the December birthstone.

In recognition of its popularity, in 2002 Tanzanite was added to the jewellery industry’s official birthstone list. This say Tanzanite join Turquoise and zircon as accepted birthstones for December. Not a small thing, especially when you consider this was the first time the list had been changed since 1912.