According to legend, the tourmaline came across the rain from the interior of the earth, taking in all rainbow colors. The Greek legend, according to which a tourmaline at the statue of a goddess illuminated a whole temple at night, praises his special splendor. The color variety achieved by no other stone also describes his name, which is from the Sinhala "tura mali" and means "stone with mixed colors".
From a scientific point of view, the tourmalines belonging to a group of mixed crystals of the silicate class owe their color spectrum to more than 50 nuances of the rainbow colors, above all the substances iron, manganese, chromium and vanadium. At the end of the 1980s, discovered in Brazil, and due to their intense blue to blue-green color particularly valuable Paraiba tourmalines also traces of copper play a role.
Such a variety produces numerous varieties, such as the red rubellite, the green verdelite, the yellow to dark brown dravite, the black Schörl, or the currently popular blue indigo. It also easily leads to confusion - so a ruby-red rubellite of the Kremlin treasury was considered a ruby for a long time.
Also two- or multi-colored tourmalines are not rare and bear imaginative names such as "melon stones" (green shell with red core) or "carrot heads" (light crystals with dark tip). The color change between daylight and artificial light as well as the pronounced pleochroism of many stones offer additional stimuli. Tourmalines are found almost everywhere in the world, but the most important occurrences are found in Brazil, Sri Lanka and South and South West Africa.
They came to Europe for the first time in 1703 when Dutch brought them from Ceylon. They have also discovered a special feature that has so far not been observed in any crystal: Tourmalines can be electrostatically charged by heating and subsequent cooling, pressing or rubbing (pyroelectric or piezoelectric effect). And so it came about that they used warmed tourmalines as "Ashschrekker" (Ashschieher) to draw the ashes out of their marsh whistles. Because of this property, the tourmaline still finds use in electronics, although most tourmalines are processed into jewelery. Because of their natural rod shape, they are particularly suitable for baguette cuttings, but also for cabochons, which is impressively demonstrated by the 21-piece tourmaline cabochons of the German football league. Like the colors are also the healing effects attributed to the tourmaline .
Black tourmalines are designed to defend harmful radiations and solve energy blockages, green stones strengthen the immune system and self-protection, pink and red stones increase compassion and help blue stones become self-sufficiency. Harmony and positive effect on love and friendships are also hoped for.