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A variety of gemstone that is characteristically yellow but varies from golden-yellow and brown to yellowish-green or bluish-green. Such stones are transparent and do not alter colour under varying illumination, hence are sometimes confused with sapphire. The dark-green variety is alexandrite. A colourless variety is rare, and seldom used as a gemstone.
The yellowish-green variety has sometimes been confused with peridot and spodumene. The transparent stones are faceted, usually mixed cut, but those that are cloudy or chatoyant are cut
From: An Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry, autor: Harold Newman, publishers: Thames and Hudson