|More than 3,000 years ago Egyptians fashioned beads from golden green crystals mined on an island in the Red Sea. Known to the Greeks and Romans as Topazios, this island off the coast of Egypt was an important sources for fine peridot, the gem variety of the mineral forsterite. Originally called topazion, after the island, this gem was renamed peridot in the 18th century. The island is known today as Zabargad, the Arabic name for peridot.|
Other sources of peridot include Burma, the United States, Norway, Brazil, China, Australia, and Pakistan.
|Pure spinel is colorless, but impurities give rise to a range of colors, most typically pink or red, but also purple, green and blue. They are commonly found in occurrence with corundum (ruby and sapphire) and have historically been confused with each other. Both minerals are hard, yield durable gems, and form in a range of colors.|
The major sources of spinel gemstones are Burma, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. Spinel is also found in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Vietnam, and Russia.