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Citrine History, Lore, Facts, Myths and Pictures


Citrine is a variety of quartz ranging in colors of yellow, yellow-brown, orange, dark orange-brown, reddish-brown. Citrine crystals can form together with amethyst or smoky quartz to form ametrine and bi-colored quartz.

Citrine is widely used as a gem, and is the most valuable quartz gem. It is a 7.0 on the Mohs' scale.

Almost all citrine on the market is heat-treated amethyst. Natural citrine is not common and occurs sparingly in many large quartz deposits. Natural citrine is yellow to orange, and occurs in much lighter hues than the heat-treated material, which is dark orange-brown to reddish-brown. All heat-treated material has a red tint, whereas the natural specimens do not.

In some amethyst deposits, the amethyst has been partially or fully changed to brown citrine by natural means of heating, thereby transforming it into citrine. Most material comes from Brazil, but almost all of the Brazilian material is heat-treated amethyst.

Citrine can also be found in the Ural Mountains of Russia, in Dauphine, France, and in Madagascar. Although, often cut as a gemstone, citrine is actually somewhat rare in nature. Specimens of low grade, inexpensive amethyst or smoky quartz are often cooked at high temperatures to produce the more profitable orange yellow citrine. Citrines whose colors have been produced by artificial means tend to have much more of an orange or reddish caste than those found in nature, which are usually a pale yellow.

Darker colors are more highly prized, including the medium golden orange and dark sherry-colors.

Citrine it is often confused with the more expensive orange-yellow topaz and is at times sold as topaz by unscrupulous dealers. The practice has caused many potential citrine buyers to be suspect of citrine and fear it may be a fake topaz.

Faceted Citrines
Citrine rough

Folk Lore:

Citrine is believed to help the heart, kidney, digestive tract, liver and muscles. It promotes creativity, helps personal clarity and eliminates self-destructive tendencies.

Citine Jewelry and Cabochons

Jewelry made with citrine.  A selection of free form cabochons and rough available for custom jewelry designs.





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December 5, 2002 20:44