Feature Gems & Gemology, Fall 1982, Vol. 18, No. 3

Gemstones of Pakistan: Emerald, Ruby, and Spinel

Only during the last few years have the gem riches of Pakistan become known to the rest of the
world. This article reports on three gem materials currently being mined: emerald, corundum (most importantly, ruby), and spinel. Intensely colored emerald crystals occur in dolomitic talc schists in the Swat Valley. Unusually high optical properties and density serve to distinguish these emeralds from those found elsewhere. Numerous gas-liquid inclusions are also typical. In the Hunza Valley, specimen and gem-quality crystals of corundum and spinel occur in beds of marble enclosed in gneisses and mica schists. The gemological properties of the Pakistan rubies and sapphires vary only slightly within normal limits.