South Sea Pearls

Mother-of-pearl

Posted by Francisco Javier Fernandez Sanchez on

Mother-of-pearl has been used since pre-historic times for adornment. In the modern ages, it was also artistically used in marquetry, gaming chips, devotional artefacts, as a bead for the cultured pearl industry but also in the button industry, being rather popular before plastics came into action. Mother-of-pearl is the smooth nacreous iridescent coating on the interior of some molluscs and Pinctada maxima, the Australian South Sea pearl oyster (also known as pearl button oyster and mother-of-pearl oyster) has been a rather important source not only for the quality of the nacre but also because the wild shells have notorious sizes...

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What do you know about Pearls history?

Posted by Francisco Javier Fernandez Sanchez on

During Christopher Columbus’s third (1498) and fourth (1502) voyages to the New World, he repeatedly encountered native people adorned with natural pearls. 

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World's oldest pearl discovered near Abu Dhabi

Posted by Francisco Javier Fernandez Sanchez on

The 8,000-year-old pearl was found during excavations at Marawah Island which also revealed the earliest architecture in the UAE.

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The Pearl Journey

Posted by Francisco Javier Fernandez Sanchez on

Few people outside the gem industry realize the true nature of a cultured pearl’s journey.

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Did you ever heard about Natural Pipi Pearls from Tahiti?

Posted by Francisco Javier Fernandez Sanchez on

Recently, the Laboratoire Français de Gemmologie (LFG) received a parcel of nearly 100 pearls submitted as natural pearls from Pinctada maculata. The owner (Bruno Arrighi, Croissy Pacific) specified that he had personally collected the parcel in French Polynesia during the past year (figure 1).Pinctada maculata is a bivalve mollusk (figure 2) found in the Pacific Ocean, particularly near French Polynesia and the Cook Islands, that may produce rare “poe pipi” (better known as “pipi”) pearls. There were several unsuccessful attempts in the 1950s to produce cultured pipi specimens. Today, all such pearls are considered natural. Different techniques are used to find the...

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