Tibetan Quartz

Tibetan Quartz is a rare, white gemstone from deposits near Lake Chabyer Caka on the Tibetan Plateau. Displaying a beautiful and rare shimmering translucency, Tibetan Quartz is a unique addition to any jewelry collection.

Hardness 7
Refractive Index 1.544 - 1.553
Relative Density 2.65
Enhancement None

Beauty

Named for its country of origin, Tibetan Quartz is a variety of Colorless Quartz. Colorless Quartz is also known as White Quartz or Rock Crystal (from the Greek ‘krystallos’ meaning ice).

Tibetan Quartz displays pure ice whites with a beautiful shimmer visually similar to adularescence in Moonstone. The exact gemological cause of this effect is still being investigated.

Its key quality considerations are; translucency (soft radiating inner glow); pure whites with an almost luminescent, misty appearance; a delicate brilliance and soft luster; and optimal lapidary. Semitransparent to translucent, Tibetan Quartz is finished eye-clean, the highest quality clarity grade for colored gemstones.

The modern name Quartz is derived from the Saxon word ‘querklufterz’, meaning cross-vein-ore. Tibetan Quartz is a variety of macrocrystalline (large crystal) Quartz, a group which also includes Amethyst, Citrine, Lavender Quartz, Madagascan Rose Quartz, and Tiger’s Eye. Cryptocrystalline (small crystal) Quartz gemstones include Agate, Chalcedony, Jasper, and Onyx.

Rarity

While Colorless Quartz is found worldwide, Tibetan Quartz is exclusively from deposits near Lake Chabyer Caka in the Gangdise Mountains in the interior of the Tibetan Plateau. As a sole source gemstone, Tibetan Quartz’s genuine rarity is undeniable.

The mines are not easily accessible, so most Tibetan Quartz is mined by hand. First unearthed around 2002, Tibetan Quartz is plagued by sporadic output and limited availability. Gems of this quality and appearance are not available on the open market.

Receiving no enhancements or treatments, Tibetan Quartz is one of the few gemstones that are entirely natural.

Durability & Care

Tibetan Quartz is a durable gemstone (Mohs’ Hardness: 7) well-suited to everyday wear. Always store Tibetan Quartz carefully to avoid scuffs and scratches. Clean with gentle soap and lukewarm water, scrubbing behind the gem with a very soft toothbrush as necessary. After cleaning, pat dry with a soft towel or chamois cloth.

Map Location

Click map to enlarge