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Csarite becomes part of the National Gem Collection

March 10, 2014


Jeffrey Post, curator of the National Gem Collection in Washington, holds the csarite stones donated to the collection.

Dubai--Two large, rare color-changing csarite gemstones are now in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Gem Collection, thanks to a donation from Milenyum Mining Ltd.

The Dubai-based miner donated the stones, a 44.48-carat faceted oval-shaped csarite and a 159.33-carat cat’s eye cabochon csarite, at the American Gem Trade Association’s GemFair, which took place Feb. 4 to 9 in Tucson.

Jeffrey Post, curator of the National Gem Collection, accepted the donation.

The collection is housed at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington. It consists of about 350,000 mineral specimens and 10,000 gemstones, including the Hope Diamond, making it one of the largest of its kind in the word.

“Large color-change diaspore gemstones are rare, indeed. (They) are both significant upgrades to the collection, so we are very appreciative of the contribution,” Post said.

Csarite, a naturally color-changing diaspore, is mined at its one global source, the Anatolia Mountains of Turkey. Milenyum currently is the only company that actively mines the gemstone.

“To our knowledge, currently there are fewer than 20 faceted csarite gemstones in the world that have a weight of 40 carats and above. Given the rarity of this unusual gem, we feel the Smithsonian’s National Gem Collection is a fitting home for two of the few examples available in this size and quality,” said Milenyum Mining President Murat Akgun.

In January, designer Erica Courtney announced that her eponymous company will be the only authorized distributor of csarite in the United States through its new division, Courtney Collection.

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The Courtney Collection division will focus on rare and collectible gemstones, including csarite, which will be obtained through Milenyum.