Its name Citrine is derived from an old French word, "citrin", meaning lemon. This gem has often been called by other names (quartz topaz, or topaz) all of which are misleading. It is also called "healing quartz".
On the Mohs Scale of hardness, this stone is rated 7. It is slightly softer and less brilliant than the rarer and costlier "precious topaz" with which it has often been confused.
Sister of the purple quartz (Amethyst), citrine crystals are found in igneous metamorphic and sedimentary rocks. It is believed that some of its varieties may have actually begun as amethyst, but heat from nearby molten rocks may have changed them to the yellow form of quartz.
It comes in a wide range of color shades, from pale straw-yellow to lemon-yellow, from amber-brown to reddish-orange. It’s a pleasing stone in terms of color and is fairly durable. However, it also lacks the subtle color shades, like the pinkish-yellow or pinkish-amber that is characteristics of precious topaz.
|Image from AllAboutGemstones.com|
This gem is known to change color when subjected to heat and is therefore routinely heated in the jewelry-making process to intensify its color. Its natural variety is quite rare, so most of its varieties in the gem market are actually the heat treated amethyst and smoky quartz.
Due to being heat sensitive, this jewel should not be left in direct sunlight for a long time because it will lead to its permanent change in color.
Brazil is the largest producer of this stone. Other sources are Argentina, Madagascar, Zaire, Namibia, Spain, and Russia.
This gemstone, like all forms of quartz, was believed to have magical powers and was worn as a talisman against evil thoughts and snake venom. This jewel was also considered to have medicinal properties and was commonly used as a remedy for urinary and kidney ailments. This golden gemstone is said to support vitality and health while encouraging and guiding hope, energy and warmth within the wearer.
Being symbol of hope and strength, this jewel can be a very good gift option. For someone with a limited budget, it offers an attractive choice because it is quite affordable and can make a lovely ring, especially when designed with diamonds. It is cut into different types of shapes, especially oval and rectangular.
It can be also used as a centerpiece for earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.