13/07/2018
Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Gemology map of Scotland - definitive treasure map of Scotland's natural resources

d8c65c6f-76c0-478f-89ee-99bcca42e609

Discover where some of Scotland's most beautiful gems are found with this unique gemology map created by Edinburgh jeweller Alistir Wood Tait.

Alistir, who is one of Scotland's leading experts on antique jewellery, has created the gemology map to demonstrate the country's rich jewellery heritage - and the spots where gems are waiting to be dug up.

Scottish sapphires are among the rarest of all Scottish gemstones and can be found in just one location on the Isle of Harris The scarcity of the stones, and therefore their value, has increased because the area where they are found has been protected since it was designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) in 1990.

Agates can be found at various locations, but most notably in parts of Angus (Montrose and Monifieth) and Ayrshire (Dunure and Galston). Sometimes they can be found loose on beaches or in farmer’s fields, or they can be hammered out of rocks.

Cairngorm and Morion are ancient Celtic names for the coloured quartz found in Scotland’s mountains regions, most notably around Loch Tay, Perthshire. Cairngorm is a smoky, yellow-brown colour and similar types found in other parts of the world are known as Citrines, because of their lemon-yellow transparent colour. Morion is found in a natural, opaque, black form.

Elie Rubies are found exclusively at a beauty spot in the Kingdom of Fife which has earned the nickname, Ruby Bay.
In truth the name ruby is actually a misnomer, since these Scottish stones are actually garnets – known by the mineral name Pyrope – which have a distinctive, but unusual deep red colouring.

Scottish gold from Scotland's streams and rivers has been sought for centuries.

Iona marble from the Western Isles and Shetland Serpentine marble are much sought after for jewellery making purposes.
The pale green Iona marble was used to make the font at historic Iona Abbey, however, smaller pieces can be beautifully polished, and have also proved popular, particularly in Scottish pebble jewellery.

Alistir Wood Tait Antique & fine jewellery

Alistir Wood Tait is a jeweller and gemmologist, and has been prominent in Edinburgh’s jewellery establishment for more than three decades. Alistir’s interest started as a schoolboy hobby collecting Scottish minerals, agates and gold panning

As a teenager in 1973 Alistir was the youngest student to attain the Fellowship Diploma of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain. He set out on his professional career in the African gem trade working for Arthur Thomas Gems and returned to Edinburgh to develop his experience in retail, leading to the establishment of his own business in 1980. 

The shop on Rose Street is a haven for lovers of beautiful things and the displays reflect the unique nature of the stock. Each of the staff is a specialist in their own field and brings their love and enthusiasm for gems and jewellery to customers and clients.

116a Rose Street, Edinburgh EH2 3JF; e-mail; website.

(Precious Scotland map copyright Alistir Wood Tait)

 

Back to "Scottish maps and resources" Category

13/07/2018 Share this story   Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

Painter William Dyce was born - On this day in history

Scottish painter William Dyce was born on 19 September 1806.


Historian Gilbert Burnet was born - On this day in history

Scottish historian Gilbert Burnet was born on 18 September 1643.


Precious David Linvingstone tableaux painstakingly restored as part of a £6.1M heritage project

A group of precious polychromatic plaster tableaux depicting David Livingstone's historic journey to Africa ...


David Dunbar Buick was born - On this day in history

Scottish inventor David Dunbar Buick was born on 17 September 1854.


Other Articles

On this day in Scottish history - King James VII of Scotland died

King James VII of Scotland died on 16 September 1701. ...


The Hector emigrant ship left Loch Broom bound for Canada

The Hector emigrant ship left Loch Broom bound for Canada on 15 September 1773.


Geographer Robert Gordon was born - On this day in history

Scottish geographer Robert Gordon of Straloch was born on 14 September 1580. ...


Call and Response: The University of Glasgow & Slavery

Members of the public are invited to react and respond to a new exhibition at the University of Glasgow that ...