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Abundant alexandrite deposits were first discovered in 1830 in the Sanarka River near the Ural Mountains of Russia. The gem was named after the young Alexander II, the then heir apparent to the throne. It caught the nation’s fancy because of its red and green colors mirroring the then national military colors of Russia. Alexandrite is a rare color-changing variant of the mineral chrysoberyl. It is the birthstone for June, and gift stone for 55th wedding anniversary. Besides colour change, it can also show cat’s eye phenomenon, a rare feat for any gem. Apart from Russia, the gem is also now found in Sri Lanka, Brazil, Tanzania & Madagascar.

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