A miniature purpurine carving of an elephant, by Fabergé, circa 1900, FOOTNOTES The deep crimson vitreous material purpurine, was exclusive to the Fabergé workshops and frequently used in their animal carvings. It was made by introducing lead chromate into a glass matrix, a technique initially used in Italy during the 18th century and rediscovered by the Imperial Glass Factory in St Petersburg.
The Star of India, at 563.35 carats, is the largest and most famous star sapphire in the world. Formed some 2 billion years ago, it was discovered, allegedly more than 300 years ago, in Sri Lanka, where excellent sapphires are still to be found in deposits of sand and gravel left by ancient rivers. J. P. Morgan presented the sapphire to the New York Museum of Natural History in 1900 where it remains one of the most renowned objects in their collection.
Red beryl crystals range in color from orange-red to purplish-red with medium tones. The largest crystal ever found weighed 54 carats. An average faceted gem stone weighs .15 carats with the largest at 8.0 carats. The only locality for red beryl crystals suitable for faceting is the Wah Wah mountains near Beaver, Utah. This is the only place in the world where gem quality red beryl has been found.