Large oval of the earth (color)#937

An Earth tone tourmaline oval, orange pink brown hue This orange pink brown oval is clean and weighs 9.59 carats. Earth tone is a nice new name for it, traditionally it would be called a dravite. It has minimal dichroism which makes for a bright open stone.


This very nice, eye clean, larger oval with great crystal is in search of a name.  Older tourmaline lovers, that have been around a crystal/gem or two would call it dravite.   This is because dravite is a trade name for brownish tourmaline.  Dravite, the trade name, was derived from Dravite, a species of tourmaline that can come in brown, but does not have to.  The final straw is that most of the brownish tourmaline in the world is Elbate a related mineral to Dravite and the most common species of tourmaline found in gems.  Since dravite is old/dated and perhaps confusing I will try and describe the gemestone’s color.  It is an orange/brown with some pink depending on the light.  Sort of like old salmon.  Now people selling tourmaline would say that the name stunk and I know it sounds a little fishy, but what is a simple cutter expect to do.  Now East Africa has been producing some really pretty tourmaline browns and creative people who know 50 cent words are calling them spicy names like cinnamon and nutmeg.  Now I have some of those East African browns in the collection and I like the names (my favorite is actually Mahogany), but the rich pastel look of this gemstone just doesn’t seem to fit.  So I waited until out of the poet’s mouth came “earth tones”.  And there you have it, a great name and a great stone for someone who does not want to shout, but blend in with the organic whole of the earth. This brown orange oval weighs 9.59  carats.



About Bruce Fry

I was born in Summit, NJ in 1947 and graduated from Summit High School in 1966. I graduated from the Colorado School of Mines in 1970 and after spending another year in graduate school, I left to see the world of Brazil. After spending some more time discovering myself, I ended up working for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for 32 years as an Air Quality Engineer in the Department of Environmental Protection. I retired in 2007 and took up faceting gemstones again after a long hiatus that reached back to my twenties. I had started cutting cabochons when I was 13 and bought my first faceting machine when I was 15, but ran out of money and time until I retired. My great love in gemology is tourmaline and the collection presented here represents my effort to get as much beauty and variety in the colors of tourmaline as I can. I was particularly lucky in being able to get unheated cuprian tourmaline before copper was discovered in gem grade tourmaline from Mozambique.
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