Definition of alexandrite in English:



mass noun
  • A gem variety of chrysoberyl which appears green in daylight and red in artificial light.

    • ‘Before nightfall, the group had seen amethyst, citrine, imperial topaz, aquamarine, tourmaline, and even alexandrite.’
    • ‘He rains light kisses all over her face and neck, taking her hand and sliding a beautiful diamond and alexandrite ring onto her finger.’
    • ‘Solid-state lasers such as alexandrite and titanium-doped sapphire are widely tunable between 1.1 and 1.6 m.’
    • ‘Lasers with wavelengths of 600-1100 nm (such as the ruby, alexandrite, and diode) penetrate deeply and are absorbed by eumelanin in the hair shaft and follicle, which is thought to be the target chromophore.’
    • ‘Randy G. Lander is a Russian descendant and she carries on the medieval Khazars tradition of jewelry trading with an emphasis on alexandrite. She can tell you alexandrite is the rarest gemstone on earth.’


Mid 19th century: from the name of Tsar Alexander II of Russia (see Alexander) + -ite.