It is named after the East African state of Tanzania, the only place in the world where it has been found. Africa? Does anyone think of gemstones when they hear that name? Well they should, because Africa is a continent which provides the world with a multitude of truly magnificent gemstones, like tanzanite for example. On its discovery in 1967, it was enthusiastically celebrated by the specialists as the 'gemstone of the 20th century'. They held their breath in excitement as they caught sight of the first deep-blue crystals which had been found in the Merelani Hills near Arusha in the north of Tanzania.

With an aurora of stunning purple-blues, ultramarines, greens and pinks, nothing on Earth can compare to the vibrant and sensual personality of Tanzanite. Tanzanite, the striking blue-purple member of the Zoisite family, has taken the world by storm in the last twenty years. Sales of Tanzanite have rocketed in recent years outstripping sales of all other precious gems, with the exception of Sapphire

Tanzanite soon found its way to America, arriving at the New York based jewellers Tiffany & Co. Louis Comfort Tiffany was immediately enraptured by their beauty but disturbed by its gemological name of “Blue Zoisite”.  As with anything in fashion, it’s all in the name, and so this rare and exotic African gemstone was christened Tanzanite.