A large rough tanzanite crystal. The biggest tanzanite in the world is a single large crystal of 16,839 carats. Photo credit : TanzaniteOne Mining

Ten Fascinating Tanzanite Facts

FACT #1

Tanzanite Celebrates Its 50th Birthday
Tanzanite was first discovered in Tanzania in 1967. The find was momentous, as it was the first transparent blue gem discovered in hundreds of years, representing a brand new addition to the world of gemstones. 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of this rare and incredibly alluring gem.
FACT #2

A One in a Million Geological Birth
Comprehensive geological research has indicated that the conditions responsible for creating tanzanite were so unique that the chance of finding tanzanite in another part of the world is less than a million to one.
FACT #3

Extreme Geographical Rarity
Tanzanite is exclusively found in Tanzania, East Africa, in a remote area called Merelani, near the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro.
FACT #4

A Gem For New Beginnings
Unlike many other gemstones which have been mined for many hundreds of years, tanzanite is a fresh, new discovery. While the gem itself is unencumbered by historic associations, its heritage is underpinned by an age-old Maasai affinity with the color blue: regarded as sacred, healing and, above all, representative of new life. Based on this tradition, and the gem’s relatively recent discovery, many people now see tanzanite as "the" birthstone, irrespective of the month, and present this beautiful gem as a gift on occasions calling for a celebration of new life and new beginnings.
FACT #5

Largest Specimen
The biggest tanzanite in the world is a single large crystal of 16,839 carats – well over 3 kg!  It was mined by TanzaniteOne Mining Ltd. and named “The Mawenzi,” after Kilimanjaro’s second highest peak.
FACT #6

Legendary Origins
Among the local people of Tanzania, various stories and myths exist as to how this precious gem came about. It is popularly believed that tanzanite was formed by an act of God, when he used lightning strikes to set the surrounding hills alight. After the fires had burnt out and the earth cooled down, the rocks deep inside the earth turned blue. 
FACT #7

December Birthstone & Wedding Anniversary Gift
Tanzanite is the official birthstone for December, and the suggested gift for the 24th wedding anniversary.
FACT #8

The Gemstone of a Generation
Due to its very limited supply and rarity, tanzanite is becoming increasingly recognized as an heirloom gemstone. Those fortunate to already own a tanzanite, and those who will purchase one before the only known deposit is depleted, are custodians of a gem that will be passed on as an heirloom to future generations.
FACT #9

“Heart of the Ocean”
The stone in the heart-shaped necklace worn by Kate Winslet in the movie Titanic was a tanzanite. The fictional story describes the gem as a blue diamond – but in reality, blue diamonds do not possess such a deep blue saturation as depicted in the movie.
FACT #10

Three Colors in One Stone
Tanzanite is uniquely trichroic. This means that in its rough form, it radiates three different colors from each of its crystallographic axes: blue, violet and red. Once cut and polished, tanzanite ranges from electric violets to vibrant blues, deep royals, and rich indigos.