Huge 116-ct Tsavorite Gifted to Smithsonian

Huge 116-ct Tsavorite Gifted to Smithsonian
Pic credit: Jeff Scovil, courtesy of Bridges Tsavorite

One of the world’s largest tsavorite garnets has gone on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, in Washington DC, USA.

The 116.76-carat, 177-facet Lion of Merelani is the largest precision-cut tsavorite in the world, and the largest tsavorite gem ever cut in the US.

Tsavorite is a precious gemstone first discovered by famed geologist Campbell Bridges in Tanzania, in 1967, and then in Kenya in 1970. The green grossular garnet (silicate mineral crystals) has also been found in Madagascar and, in small quantities, in Pakistan and Queen Maud Land, Antarctica.

The original rough Lion of Merelani tsavorite crystal was discovered near Merelani, in Tanzania, in 2017, and weighed 283 carats.

The gem is a gift to the National Gem Collection from Somewhere in the Rainbow, a privately owned gem and jewelry collection, and from Bruce Bridges (son of Campbell), CEO of the Bridges Tsavorite mining company.

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