Semiprecious gemstones are measured for their hardness.
Semiprecious gemstones are measured for their “hardness,” or durability by the “Mohs Scale of Relative Mineral Hardness,” named after the Austrian/German mineralogist who designed it, Friedrich Mohs, 1773-1839. It is a qualitative scale in which the hardness of the mineral being tested is determined by its ability to scratch, or be scratched, by any one of the standard minerals arranged in order of increasing hardness.
The standard minerals on the scale, and their hardness level and scratch resistance level, are as follows: talc, 1, soft, can be scratched with a fingernail, gypsum, 2, soft, can be scratched with a fingernail, calcite, 3, medium soft, can be scratched with a steel knife, fluorite, 4, medium soft, can be scratched with a steel knife, apatite, 5, medium soft, can be scratched with a steel knife, Orthoclase, includes pyrite & prehnite, 6, medium hard, can be scratched with a steel file, Quartz, 7, medium hard, can be scratched with a steel file, Topaz, 8, hard, can be scratched with a diamond, Corundum, includes ruby & sapphire, 9, hard, can be scratched with a diamond, and Diamond, 10, hard, can only be scratched by another diamond.
The harder the gemstone, the more likely it is to last as a jewel or decoration. Hardness is one of the ways genuine gemstones can be distinguished from glass or acrylic imitations because a gemstone scratches, yet is not scratched by glass or acrylic imitations. Another way to distinguish genuine gemstones is by density.
My web store, https://www.squareup.com/store/circlesofgemstones has semiprecious gemstone jewelry handcrafted with an array of gemstones with a hardness level from 3, Calcite gemstones, to a hardness level of 7, Quartz gemstones, available for purchase.
The viewpoints expressed here are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If concerned, seek attention from your healthcare or spiritual provider.