The name is derived from Latin "citrina" which means "yellow". Citrine is a variety of quartz. The natural gemstones tend to be pale yellow, often with smoky tones.
Natural citrines are rare; most commercial citrines are produced by heating smoky quartz, (which produces light to medium yellow clolors) and amethyst (which produces stronger yellows and orange-red to orange brown colors). Heat-treated amethysts will have small red lines in the crystal but loses its dichroism, unlike genuine citrine. The treatment is usually done right at the mine, and is stable, and fully accepted within the gem trade. They are also called "Brazilian topaz", "Madeira topaz".
Because the process is not always uniform, mixing of amethyst purple colour and citrines yellow can occur and is called ametrine. Natural occurrences of ametrine come from the Anahi mine in Bolivia.
It is nearly impossible to tell cut citrine from yellow topaz visually, but they differ in hardness. Topaz is more expensive.
Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul, Minas Gerais) is the leading producer of citrine. It is also mined in Madagascar, Spain, USA (California, Colorado, Georgia, and Nevada) and Ural Mountains of Russia, Dauphine, France.
Citrine can be easily scratched. Citrine gem stone often permenantly changes color if left in the sunlight for several hours.
It is not a scarce gemstone. Top prices are paid for the most saturated yellows, oranges and reddish tones. The least are paid for pale or smoky colors. Custom cutting increases value and inclusions decrease it. There is no exponential increase in value per carat with increase in size, bacause large sizes are readily available.
Features of citrines available from HeinRich
Buy 1 for R120
This page has been updated on the 2016-08-14.