Morganite is a softer gemstone than sapphires and diamonds; however, it is harder than several other engagement ring gemstones, including tanzanite and quartz. This gemstone is commonly found in Madagascar, Brazil, Mozambique, and Afghanistan. The color range for morganite includes pink, rose, peach, and salmon hues. In today’s market, the pinker hues are more desirable; heat treatments can be applied to stones to enhance the pink color.
All hues of morganite have a Mohs Hardness of 7.5-8.0 and have a hexagonal crystal structure. The uncommon pale pink color is a result of the presence of cesium or manganese in the stone.
Historically, there are accounts of the ancient Greeks using morganite or a similar stone to create the first pair of glasses. Since morganite was believed to be associated strongly with water, it was worn by voyagers on long overseas journeys as protection from hurricanes. Interestingly, this stone was also used during droughts to encourage rainfall.
Modern discoveries of morganite occurred in California and Madagascar in the 20th Century. The famous gemologist George F. Kunz renamed the stone morganite in honor of financier and gem enthusiast J.P. Morgan for his support in the arts and sciences and gemstone gifts to the American Museum of Natural History and Museum of Natural History.
Although morganite gemstones are a relevantly recent discovery, their use in engagement rings is rapidly increasing. They are often chosen to be mounted in rose gold, to enhance the feminine, pink hue. Furthermore, morganite is a durable, lasting material that requires very little maintenance, making it an ideal choice for engagement rings.
Morganite is evaluated similarly to other precious stones, with Color, Clarity, Cut, and Carat being the most important factors to consider. Color is usually a preference determined by the wearer as some may prefer the pink to the peach hues. Faceted morganite usually has no visible inclusions or imperfections as other stones such as emeralds may have. This gives the stone a very lustrous appearance. Many cuts suit morganite stones, including round ovals, cushions, hearts, and pear shapes. Lighter-colored stones may have deeper cuts to accentuate their color, as shallower cuts will make the stone’s color appear lighter. The fewer the inclusions, the stronger the color, and better the cut, the higher the cost of the stone. Overall, morganite gemstones are a stand-out option due to their hardness, durability, vibrance, and clarity.