spinel is derived from the Latin word spina, meaning little thorn, referring to
the sharp points on some crystals. Spinel is found in a wide range of colors due
to the presence of various impurities, and is transparent to almost opaque.
Pinkish - red spinel colored by chromium and iron is most popular although for
many years it was thought to be a variety of ruby. Spinel is the great impostor
of gemstone history: many famous rubies in crown jewels around the world are
actually spinels. The most famous is the Black Prince's ruby, a magnificent
170-carat red spinel that now adorns the Imperial State Crown of England in the
British Crown Jewels after a long history: Henry V even wore it on his battle helmet! The Timur ruby, a 361-carat red Spinel now owned by
Queen Elizabeth, has the names of some of the Mughal emperors who previously
owned it engraved on its face. Spinel is a durable gemstone that is perfect
for all jewelry uses. It is most often faceted in oval, round, or cushions
shapes and is not currently found in calibrated sizes due to its rarity.
Spinel occurs in granites and metamorphic rocks and is often found in
occasion with corondum. They are mostly found in Burma, Sri Lanka and