The name “spinel” comes from the Latin word spina, which means thorn, in reference to the shape of spinel crystals. This August birthstone comes in a wealth of colours from intense red, vibrant pink, orange, purple, violet, blue and bluish green.
For centuries, spinel was mistaken for other gemstones. Some of history’s most famous “rubies” have actually turned out to be this August birthstone. The approximately 170ct Black Prince’s “ruby” for example, was owned by a succession of Moorish and Spanish kings before Edward, Prince of Wales (also known as the Black Prince) received the stone in 1367 as payment for winning a battle on behalf of Peter of Castile. It wasn’t until the 18th century that spinel was clearly separated from ruby on the basis of their chemical differences. Today, this historic red spinel is set in Great Britain’s Imperial State Crown, just above the 317.40ct Cullinan II diamond.
Spinel is a highly sought after gem. The most commercially important are red and pink, lilac-colored spinels, and intense blue. And just like most gemstones, spinel without any eye-visible inclusion in highly value. Having said that, spinel can have some very beautiful inclusions that reflect the gem’s usual octahedral crystal growth. Some appear in groups that resemble human fingerprints.
Spinel is thought to be a remedy for all types of blood loss and inflammatory diseases. They are also believed to ease anger and promote harmony.
At Kimjoux, you can choose spinel as a gemstone option for your customisable, made to order jewellery. We also offer an array of stunning loose spinel that are ethical and fairly traded, as centre pieces for our bespoke items.