The name "tourmaline" comes from the Sinhalese words tura mali, which mean "stone of mixed colours." As its name implies, tourmaline stands apart from other gems with its broad spectrum of colours in every shade of the rainbow.
One of this gem’s most impressive traits is its ability to become electrically charged through heat (pyroelectricity) and through pressure (piezoelectricity). When charged, tourmaline can act as a magnet by oscillating, and by attracting or repelling particles of dust.
Ancient magicians used black tourmaline as a talisman to protect against negative energy and evil forces. Today, many still believe that it can shield against radiation, pollutants, toxins and negative thoughts.
Egyptian legend tells that tourmaline found its famed array of colours when, on its journey up from the earth’s centre, it passed through a rainbow. Because of its colourful occurrences, tourmaline has been confused with other gems throughout history.
While plenty of tourmaline is mined around the world, it’s rare to find fine gem-quality tourmaline in bright colours. This range of material means that the price of tourmaline can vary almost as much as the colour.
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