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jewelry glossary

Antique jewelry glossary

Welcome to our extensive antique jewelry glossary with around 1,500 jewelry related entries.If you feel you are missing an explanation, feel free to let us know and we will add it.

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Composite stone

A simulation of a gemstone that is made of two or three layers of gemstone or glass that are cemented or fused together so as to appear as a whole natural stone.

The purpose is to provide a more attractive colour or a protective top surface (as for an opal).

They can be distinguished from genuine stones by several tests:

  • by revealing a ring around the gridle, especially when immersed in water or certain liquids and then viewed from the side
  • by having different specific gravity
  • by microscopic examination
  • by immersion in hot water or an organic solvent which will soften the cement and separate the layers

Such stones are sometimes called an 'assembled stone'.

From: An Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry, autor: Harold Newman, publishers: Thames and Hudson

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