Gems: Hackmanite - Rhodochrosite

12.43 ct. Cat's Eye Colorless Iolite

12.43 ct. Cat's Eye Colorless Iolite

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  • Color:  Colorless
  • Clarity:  Transparent
  • Origin:  Embilipitiya, Sri Lanka
  • Cut:  Round Cabochon
  • Treatments:  None
  • Measurements:  15.6 x 15 mm

Colorless Iolite (more properly called by the mineralogical name, Cordierite) is an unusual variety of a fairly well known gem material that is found in a single locality.  The deposit near Embilipitiya, Sri Lanka is the sole producer of these - and then only sporadically.  Gems from this area show none of the pleochroism that typical Iolite is known for and show the same lack of color in all directions. 

What is double unusual about this stone it that it is also a phenomenal stone - a true cat's eye.  Chatoyancy in Iolite is fairly unusual, we have offered a few stones with weak to moderate eyes over the years from various deposits.  In colorless examples from Embilipitiya, the phenomenon is exceedingly rare.  Given that, this stone is impressive for both its quality - the eye is moderately intense and moves nicely and for its size - by far the largest of these we have seen.  A singular piece to be sure. 

$40 / carat - $497 total