Introduction:  Chrome diopside is a variety of the species, diopside.

Colors:  medium dark to dark chrome green

Clarity:  Chrome diopside does not have a clarity type classification but usually stones are eye clean.

Stone Sizes:  Most chrome diopsides are less than 5 carats.  The gems look best when cut in symmetrical shapes such as rounds, trillions or square cushions.  Emerald cuts and baguettes with broad rectangular facets are also acceptable.  Ovals and pear shapes tend to show too much extinction to be attractive.

-Russia is the main source of material.  Finland and Kenya would be considered minor sources.


-Refractive Index:  1.675-1,701 (+0.029, -0.10)

-Birefringence:  0.024 to 0.030

-Optic Character:  Doubly refractive, biaxial positive

-Specific Gravity:  3.29 (+0.11, -0.07)

-Hardness:  5.5 to 6

-Toughness:  poor

-Chemical Composition:  CaMgSi2O6

-Cause of Color:  chromium

-Absorption Spectra:  635, 655, 670 nm, doublet at 690 nm

-Cleavage:  perfect in two directions

-Phenomena:  Asterism, chatoyancy

Name:  Diopside is from the Greek meaning, appearing double.

Dates:  None

Care:  The ultrasonic is risky and the steamer should never be used.  Warm, soapy water is safe.

To see available chrome diopsides, click here.