A PRECIOUS MEXICAN FIRE OPAL
CABOCHON OVAL CUT 3.35 carats.
HIGH GRADE ORANGE BODY WITH 3D PLAY OF COLORS
History. Mexican opal has a long history, dating back as early as the 14th century, when Aztec Indians gathered the gems. Mexican residents still search for opals, digging in open-pit quarries. In this respect, not much has changed since the late 1800s.
But what has changed over the years is the definition of the term “fire opal.” According to some experts, the Mexicans themselves label any opal with play-of-color as “fire opal.” It wasn’t until the 1970s that German gem cutters, looking for faceting material, began attaching the name “fire opal” to transparent non-play-of-color material with yellow-orange to red body color.
Today, to make the moniker more definitive, the term “precious Mexican fire opal” is now used to describe play-of-color cabochon opals with yellow-orange to red body color. Those faceted opals that do not have play-of-color—and which apparently are not precious enough for some—are called simply “Mexican fire opal.”
In the past, the orangey-red to red fire opal—with or without play-of-color—has been called “cherry opal.” Mexican opal also can appear in a variety of body colors, including transparent white, translucent milky white, yellow, green, “gold,” blue, or bluish white (“azul”), and transparent colorless “jelly” or “crystal.”
Color and quality. As with all opal, look for evenness of color as well as evenness of play-of-color. Orange and red body colors are preferred, as are the colors in the play-of-color. There is an extremely 3-D play-of-color that is highly prized. The more saturated the color, the better
GEM: GENUINE NATURAL PRECIOUS MEXICAN FIRE OPAL
COUNT: 1 Piece
CARAT WEIGHT: 3.35
DIMENSION: 11.70 X 8.40 X 4.20 mm.
COLOR: ORANGE BODY WITH VARIETY OF 3D COLORS
CLARITY/GRADE: VS - AA
LUSTER: VERY STRONG, BEAUTIFUL
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