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Kingman Arizona Turquoise Cabochons
A cabochon is a gemstone that has been shaped and polished as opposed to facetted. Usually, the resulting form is a convex top with a flat bottom. The cutting of cabochons applies to opaque gems, such as turquoise, while facetting generally pertains to transparent stones such as diamonds. When cutting gemstones, the hardness of a stone is taken into consideration as softer gemstones with a hardness lower than 7 on the Mohs hardness scale are easily scratched due to silicon dioxide in dust and grit. The scratches might make a turquoise gemstone appear unattractive; therefore, they are polished as cabochons, making the scratches less evident.
Kingman Turquoise cabochons are among the most highly sought after stones of today. The Kingman Mine located in Northwestern Arizona is considered to be one of the largest turquoise mines in North America. The terms "high blue" and "Kingman" refer to the vibrant blue color associated with this particular turquoise, which, coincidentally, has set the standard for turquoise in the turquoise industry. There are very few mines that have produced this caliber of high quality bright blue rounded turquoise nuggets with black matrix. In the 1960's, some of the finest blue turquoise specimens were removed from this mine in the area known as Ithaca Peak; however, this vein of turquoise has long since been exhausted.
Natural old Kingman turquoise is extremely rare. Currently, the Kingman Mine, as well as, the Turquoise Mountain Mine, has been reentered by excavators hoping to remove more natural Kingman Turquoise.
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