To get acquainted with the rarest cultured pearls, we will have to go with you, dear readers, to the shores of sunny California and once again remember the Spanish conquistador invaders.
The Black Pearls of the New World were discovered by the conqueror Hernan Cortes in 1533 in that part of the sea that is now called the Gulf of California. The sea is named after the cruel and cunning conqueror who destroyed thousands of civilians of the ancient Inca civilization.
Many films and stories are devoted to this sea, but it is not known under the name of the Sea of Cortez: outside of Mexico it is simply called the Gulf of California.
The special and exotic beauty of the Cortes pearl has made it an invaluable treasure. Black iridescent pearls that have become the most important export product. In New Spain, these pearls surpassed even gold and silver in value.
These black pearls come from two types of oysters: the Panamanian oyster (Pinctada Mazatlantica) and the Pteria Sterna oyster (Pacific winged oyster).
The latter, in particular, can create extremely unique pearls with distinct iridescence and hues unlike any other pearl ever found.
Natural pearls were collected over the next 300 years (from the middle of the 17th century). But, the construction of the Hoover Dam upset the balance of the underwater world in the Gulf of California, which affected the number of oysters. This reduced the production of natural pearls.
The Monterrey Institute of Technology in Guaymas began studying pearl cultivation in 1993, and in 1996 the first experimental round pearl was produced.
Only 4000 pearls are grown in these waters each year, making them the rarest of cultured pearls.
Only 30 percent of products are round. The rest of the pearls are called Mabe - also known as half pearls or bubble pearls.
Jewelry made of semi-circular Cortez pearls look impressive:
But, of course, the classic form of pearls is the most desirable!
Pearls of the Sea of Cortez are completely raw; they are not polished, bleached, irradiated, coated or artificially colored.