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Gems and Jewellery

Popularly called the ‘pearl of the Indian Ocean,’ Sri Lanka has certainly lived up to this title over the centuries with a gem and jewellery industry that has had a rich and colourful existence; known as the land of gems throughout history, the country has been renowned for its rare stones for over 2,500 years.

Gems from the island nation have turned up in historical accounts all over the world. King Solomon was said to have procured a great ruby for the Queen of Sheba from Sri Lanka, Marco Polo wrote of wonderful Ceylon gems and the 400 carat blue sapphire that embellishes the British crown is also from Sri Lanka.

Of the 85 varieties of gems available worldwide, Sri Lanka is home to 40 which includes rubies, sapphires, cat’s eyes, aquamarines, topaz, garnets and zircons amongst many others. However it is best known for the Ceylon Blue Sapphire, coined the king of Sri Lankan gems and is prized for its unique cornflower blue shade and lustre as well as for being one of the few sapphires in the world that can be sold as a completely natural stone without heat treatment. Ceylon sapphires also come in stunning hues including pink, yellow, orange, green, purple and lavender.

The gem and jewellery industry in Sri Lanka is understandably a sizeable sector with the many local manufacturers generating export quality designer products incorporating the island’s wide selection of gems into their intricate designs and these are exported to all parts of the world.


 

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