Gemstones and Minerals

Minerals and Their Corresponding Gemstone Names

Gemstones

Andrew Alden

When certain minerals compress under specific conditions, most often below the surface of the earth, a process occurs which forms a new compound known as a gemstone. Gemstones can be made of one or more minerals, and as a result, some minerals refer to more than one gemstone name.

In order to better understand the interaction between the two, reference the two charts below — the first details each gemstone and the minerals that combined to form it and the second lists each mineral and the gemstones it can produce.

For instance, Quartz can form Amethyst, Ametrine, Citrine, and Morion (and a few more) gemstones depending on which other minerals and elements compress together and at what depth in the earth's crust and temperature the compression occurs at.

How Gemstones Are Formed

Most gemstones are formed in either the crust or the very top layer of the earth's mantle in the molten magma bubbling in the depths of the world, but only peridot and diamonds are formed deep in the mantle. All gems, however, are mined in the crust where they can cool to solidify in the crust, which is made up of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rock.

Like the minerals that make up gemstones, some are associated with one kind of rock in particular while others have several types of rock that go into the creation of that stone. Igneous gemstones are formed when magma solidifies in the crust and crystallizes to form minerals then an increase in pressure starts a series of chemical exchanges which eventually cause the mineral to compress into a gemstone.

Igneous rock gemstones include amethyst, citrine, ametrine, emeralds, morganite, and aquamarine as well as garnet, moonstone, apatite, and even diamond and zircon.

Gemstones to Minerals

The following chart serves as a translation guide between gemstones and minerals with each link going to photos of the gems and minerals:

Gemstone Name Mineral Name
Achroite Tourmaline
Agate Chalcedony
Alexandrite Chrysoberyl
Amazonite Microcline Feldspar
Amber Amber
Amethyst Quartz
Ametrine Quartz
Andalusite Andalusite
Apatite Apatite
Aquamarine Beryl
Aventurine Chalcedony
Benitoite Benitoite
Beryl Beryl
Bixbite Beryl
Bloodstone Chalcedony
Brazilianite Brazilianite
Cairngorm Quartz
Carnelian Chalcedony
Chrome Diopside Diopside
Chrysoberyl Chrysoberyl
Chrysolite Olivine
Chrysoprase Chalcedony
Citrine Quartz
Cordierite Cordierite
Demantoid Garnet Andradite
Diamond Diamond
Dichroite Cordierite
Dravite Tourmaline
Emerald Beryl
Garnet Pyrope, Almandine, Andradite, Spessartine, Grossularite, Uvarovite
Goshenite Beryl
Heliodor Beryl
Heliotrope Chalcedony
Hessonite Grossularite
Hiddenite Spodumene
Indigolite/Indicolite Tourmaline
Iolite Cordierite
Jade Nephrite or Jadeite
Jasper Chalcedony
Kunzite Spodumene
Labradorite Plagioclase Feldspar
Lapis Lazuli Lazurite
Malachite Malachite
Mandarin Garnet Spessartine
Moonstone Orthoclase, Plagioclase, Albite, Microcline Feldspars
Morganite Beryl
Morion Quartz
Onyx Chalcedony
Opal Opal
Peridot Olivine
Pleonast Spinel
Quartz Quartz
Rhodochrosite Rhodochrosite
Rhodolite Almandine-Pyrope Garnet
Rubellite Tourmaline
Rubicelle Spinel
Ruby Corundum
Sapphire Corundum
Sard Chalcedony
Scapolite Scapolite
Schorl Tourmaline
Sinhalite Sinhalite
Sodalite Sodalite
Spinel Spinel
Sugilite Sugilite
Sunstone Oligoclase Feldspar
Taaffeite Taaffeite
Tanzanite Zoisite
Titanite Titanite (Sphene)
Topaz Topaz
Tourmaline Tourmaline
Tsavorite Garnet Grossularite
Turquoise Turquoise
Uvarovite Uvarovite
Verdelite Tourmaline
Violan Diopside
Zircon Zircon

Minerals to Gemstones

In the following chart, the minerals in the column on the left translate to the gemstone name on the right, with links contained therein forwarding to more information and additional of the minerals and gemstones associated.


Mineral Name

Gemstone Name
Albite Moonstone
Almandine Garnet
Almandine-Pyrope Garnet Rhodolite
Amber Amber
Andalusite Andalusite
Andradite Demantoid Garnet
Apatite Apatite
Benitoite Benitoite
Beryl Aquamarine, Beryl, Bixbite, Emerald, Goshenite, Heliodore, Morganite
Brazilianite Brazilianite
Chalcedony Agate, Aventurine, Bloodstone, Carnelian, Chrysoprase, Heliotrope, Jasper, Onyx, Sard
Chrysoberyl Alexandrite, Chrysoberyl
Cordierite Cordierite, Dichroite, Iolite
Corundum Ruby, Sapphire
Diamond Diamond
Diopside Chrome Diopside, Violan
Grossular/Grossularite Hessonite, Tsavorite Garnet
Jadeite Jade
Lazurite Lapis Lazuli
Malachite Malachite
Microcline Feldspar Amazonite, Moonstone
Nephrite Jade
Oligoclase Feldspar Sunstone
Olivine Chrysolite, Peridot
Opal Opal
Orthoclase Feldspar Moonstone
Plagioclase Feldspar Moonstone, Labradorite
Pyrope Garnet
Quartz Amethyst, Ametrine, Cairngorm, Citrine, Morion, Quartz
Rhodochrosite Rhodochrosite
Scapolite Scapolite
Sinhalite Sinhalite
Sodalite Sodalite
Spessartine Mandarin Garnet
Sphene (Titanite) Titanite
Spinel Pleonast, Rubicelle
Spodumene Hiddenite, Kunzite
Sugilite Sugilite
Taaffeite Taaffeite
Topaz Topaz
Tourmaline Achroite, Dravite, Indigolite/Indicolite, Rubellite, Schorl, Verdelite
Turquoise Turquoise
Uvarovite Garnet, Uvarovite
Zircon Zircon
Zoisite Tanzanite