Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Article: Topaz


Etymology and History

  • The name topaz is believed to be derived from the Greek word 'Τοπάζιος' or 'Τοπάζιον'.
  • It is named after St. Johns Island in the Red Sea, where a yellow stone (now believed to be chrysolite) was mined in ancient times.
  • The name topaz was first applied to the mineral in 1737.
  • Ancient Sri Lanka exported native oriental topazes to Greece and ancient Egypt.
  • The word topaz may be related to the Sanskrit word 'तपस्' meaning heat or fire.
  • Nicols, the author of one of the first systematic treatises on minerals and gemstones, dedicated two chapters to topaz in 1652.
  • In the Middle Ages, the name topaz was used to refer to any yellow gemstone.
  • Many English translations of the Bible mention topaz, but it likely refers to chrysolite instead.
  • Topaz was believed to cure lunacy and provide protection from danger while traveling by the ancient Romans.
  • During the Middle Ages, topaz was believed to enhance mental powers.

Gemstone Characteristics

  • Topaz is used to make jewelry and other adornments.
  • Orange topaz is the birthstone for November and the state gemstone of Utah.
  • Blue topaz is the state gemstone of Texas.
  • Topaz comes in a variety of colors, including colorless, golden brown, and pink.
  • Imperial topaz is yellow, pink, or pink-orange.
  • Topaz in its natural state is colorless, often with a greyish cast.
  • It can be confused with citrine, but topaz is heavier.
  • Impurities and treatments can give topaz various colors, including wine red, pale gray, and pink.
  • Imperial topaz stones can fade on exposure to sunlight.
  • Blue topaz is rare and is often heat treated and irradiated to achieve a darker blue color.

Localities and Occurrence

  • Topaz is commonly found in silicic igneous rocks, such as granite and rhyolite.
  • It crystallizes in granitic pegmatites or in vapor cavities in rhyolite lava flows.
  • Topaz can be found in various countries, including Russia, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Brazil, and the United States.
  • Brazil is one of the largest producers of topaz, with some crystals reaching boulder size.
  • The largest recorded topaz, known as the American Golden Topaz, weighed 157.75 carats.

Minerals related to Topaz

  • Agate
  • Beryl
  • Opal
  • Silica
  • Silicates

    Topaz Data Sources

    Reference URL
    Knowledge Graph

    Read more


    Definition and Measurement of Toughness Toughness is related to the area under the stress-strain curve. A material must be both strong and ductile to be tough. Brittle materials lack ductility and...

    Read more


    Uses and Applications of Tortoiseshell Tortoiseshell was widely used in ancient times in the North and in Asia. It was used in the manufacture of combs, small boxes, frames, and inlays in furniture...

    Read more