I like stones. I don't particularly care if they are precious, semi-precious, or just plain rocks. I like to look at them, hold them, and collect them. This seems to run in my family. If I were very rich, I would have a huge collection of gemstones, jewelry, and big honkin' specimen rocks. It would be ridiculously expensive to buy them, keep them clean, and move them from place to place. So I settle for a small collection that sometimes I have to turn over so that I can buy new and different ones. It's a process. I hope one of the reasons you are here is because you have the same love of stones that I do. Here's to Lithophiles everywhere.
Gold, green, orange, red, brown, black
Although it is an organic material, amber is valued as a gemstone. Sometimes insects or even small mammals may be found in the fossilized resin. Baltic amber comes in a variety of colors including gold, brown, yellow, red, and green. Dominican amber often fluoresces bright blue or green under ultraviolet light.
Amber has been used since antiquity in the manufacture of jewelry and ornaments. It can be used to detoxify the body from certain types of radiation. Keep a piece of amber near your computer to protect against harmful emissions.
Amber helps clear the mind, giving mental clarity and inner peace. It promotes optimism and enhances strength and motivation. It can also protect against negativity. A gift of amber is a gift of healing.
Found in many regions, most important are the deposits of Baltic and Dominican amber.
Pale lavender to deepest violet.
Amethyst is a member of the quartz group, the most common crystal. It is well known for powerful intuitive energy. Amethyst is an extremely protective stone with a high spiritual vibration. It is also helpful in dealing with legal and monetary issues and can promote prosperity.
Amethyst has a calming energy that encourages peace, balance, patience, and stability. It can heal grief and personal loss, and enhance strength and endurance. It may be able to aid in overcoming addictive and compulsive behaviors.
Purple is the color of Spirit. It is a power color and is often used for meditation and communication. Amethyst is often used as a dream stone, and offers protection while traveling in the Astral Plane.
Found in India, Africa, Brazil, Britain and other countries
Aqua blue, golden yellow, green
Strangely enough, apatite is used mainly in the manufacture of fertilizer, as it is a source of phosphorus. Some types of apatite do fluoresce under black light. The blue and green varieties of apatite are often used as gemstones. The blue variety is called moroxite. Moon rocks brought back by astronauts from the Apollo missions contain traces of apatite.
Apatite can heal the heart and the spirit. It increases self-confidence and helps to achieve higher levels of meditation and clarity. Apatite is also useful in the process of letting go of someone or something from the past that no longer has a place in your life.
Apatite is found in Russia, Brazil, Mexico , and other countries.
Pale green, clear, red, blue
Apophyllite often forms natural pyramid structures and the crystals display a soft shine. The most desirable colors are clear and a pale green. Apophyllite is a good conductor for expansion of awareness and increased energy. It calms the mind during meditation and can help boost healing skills. Apophyllite is useful with psychic visions, divination, lucid dreaming, and astral travel. Once mastered, its unique vibrational frequency is an invaluable tool for visualization and spiritual work.
Found worldwide in volcanic environments, but there is a large quarry in India.
Aqua, turquoise, pale blue, green
Aquamarine means "water of the sea". It is a blue or turquoise variety of beryl.
Crystals that are blue in color are healers. Aquamarine helps to strengthen courage so you are able to deal with difficult issues. It can raise your energy level and aid in communication with the life force within you. It also reduces stress and will assist you in letting go of anger and emotional associations from the past.
It is believed that wearing aquamarine can enhance love and maintain a positive relationship. It helps to ensure truthfulness in both personal and business affairs. It aids in emotional and mental balance, releasing negative emotions and replacing them with peace and clarity. Tradition says that sailors often wear aquamarine charms for protection when at sea.
Blue is associated with the element of water. The water element represents the calm sea that brings us peace, but can also be stormy and ever changing. Water personalities are sensitive and caring people. They are often natural healers.
Aquamarine is found in Vietnam, Pakistan, United States, Brazil, Zambia
Light green, pink, white, red, blue
Aventurine brings good luck and money, joy, balance and clarity. It helps release anxieties and fears. It has the ability to ground an individual emotionally. It encourages personal power, a positive attitude, and a state of well-being. Because it attracts wealth and abundance through opportunity, it is often used as a lucky talisman and is a popular stone for gamblers. Carry one in your pocket and be ready to accept opportunity when it comes your way.
Countries of origin include India, Chile, Spain, Russia, Brazil, Mexico, and Canada.
Deep blue shades
Azurite is a soft stone, named for its azure blue color. It is a copper carbonate mineral that presents in numerous different forms. Its color ranges from deep to light blue, depending on it's exposure to weather. It has been ground into pigment for paint and used as a dye for fabric by many different cultures for thousands of years. It is often found together with malachite.
Azurite is known as the Stone of Heaven. It can connect the conscious with the subconscious mind and eliminate fear and anxiety, for a better understanding of the higher planes of existence. It helps to awaken psychic development and intuition and is also helpful with visualization, meditation, and spiritual alignment techniques. Azurite aids in past lives regression as well as alternative lives discovery. Keep one near you while attempting astral projection and lucid dreaming. It clears away confusion and opens the mind to new ideas and interpretations.
Bismuth is naturally occurring element and was originally found in Peru. Many of the geometric crystals are lab grown and form wonderful patterns that look like a maze or stair-steps. This spiral structure is the result of a higher growth rate around the outside edges than on the inside edges. The iridescent color of the bismuth crystal is the result of a thin oxide layer on its surface.
Bismuth is used in a wildly varied assortment of manufactured items including Pepto Bismol, cosmetics, and shotgun shells.
Bismuth is an element of transformation and can have a calming influence. It helps to heal emotional trauma and feelings of isolation.
Dark green with red random spots
What we call bloodstone is a combination of green chalcedony and inclusions of iron oxide or red jasper. During the Middle Ages, the red spots on the gemstones were believed to be real blood. It is a strong mystical healing stone. Bloodstone is well known for its creative energy. It is primarily known as an intense healing stone, balancing spiritual forces and reducing emotional stress. It makes a great gift for anyone that earns their living from their art, as it promotes creativity, and self-expression.
Sources include Australia, Brazil, China
Blue Lace Agate
Light blue with white and tan bands
Blue lace agate brings peace and calmness and works well for overcoming problems. Blue lace illuminates your mind and improves ego and self esteem. It helps to renew energy and strength. It is great to use in any situation where tensions may reside. Place one in your home or at your office to help keep everyone at peace. Agate healing stones are power stones and excellent for those that deal with numbers. It is sometimes called the wishing stone.
Found in the USA, Brazil, New Zealand, but some of the best comes from Namibia
All shades of orange to red
Carnelian promotes personal power and can protect the wearer from negative energy. In ancient times, people would keep carnelian in their houses to prevent curses from being directed at their families. Legend has it that carnelian is used by wizards to strengthen magical powers.
Carnelian is good for healing of the body and the aura. It promotes creativity and personal power and can accentuate the dramatic. It protects from bad vibrations, poverty, and calms temper. It helps the insecure person to find strength within themselves. As a major grounding stone, carnelian helps you to focus.
Found mainly in Australia, Britain, Iceland, and Brazil, and many other places.
Lavender to dark purple with light color inclusions
Charoite is a rare mineral, discovered in 1978 and named for the Chara River in Russia. It is found in conjunction with other minerals that altered limestone deposits, producing a new unique mineral. Though reportedly discovered in the 1940s, it was not known to the outside world until 1978, mostly due to its dull appearance in the field. Because of its unusual patterns it is often thought to be an artificially produced stone. The Mongols used the stone to make jewelry and other items, and on feast days they would boil the stone to make tea. This tea was used to protect tribal members from evil.
The charoite stone is often confused with the fairly similar sugilite, although it is the charoite's characteristic light colored inclusions that are the main difference between the two stones. It has the appearance of purple marble. Charoite is a stone of transformation. It can turn negative energy into positive by releasing the negative feelings and emotions. It encourages creativity and allows one to look for new solutions to old issues. It enhances courage and strength, and can be used in past life regression as well as prophesy.
Found only in Russia along the Chara River
Apple-green, but varies to deep green
Chrysoprase is a gemstone variety of chalcedony. The green color of Chrysoprase is due to trace amounts of nickel. If used in jewelry, it is said that being set in silver is best, and it has much power when carved in the shape of a heart.
Chrysoprase kept by the door provides protection from negative energy. It helps clarify and strengthen the workings of insight and higher consciousness, and encourages hope and joy. Place it on the third eye chakra to influence and focus meditation. It has been used to combat restlessness and unease. Chrysoprase can be used to promote healing by carrying one or keeping one by your bedside at night.
The best known sources of Chrysoprase are Queensland, Australia, Germany, Poland, Russia, Arizona, California, and Brazil. The Chrysoprase deposit in Poland was probably the largest occurrence in the world.
Clear yellow to golden brown
Citrine is a type of quartz that has iron impurities, and is rarely found naturally. Most commercial citrine is in fact artificially heated amethyst or smoky quartz. Citrine energizes the mind and heart. Known as the lucky "Merchants Stone", it has money energies. Citrine is a great protective talisman. It opens the mind to new ideas and promotes clarity of thought. It strengthens self-esteem, promotes balance and good cheer. It also helps digestion and aids in mental and intellectual functions. It can balance and dissipate negative energy.
Brazil is the leading producer of citrine, but it can be found in Madagascar and Spain also.
Chrome diopside's intense green color is due to chromium. It is found in South Africa, Russia, Brazil, Canada, and the United States. It is sometimes call Siberian Emerald.
Chrome diopside is a stone of the earth and can give the wearer a strong connection with Gaia. It can help with creativity and harmony, and is a good stone for cleansing and healing great trauma. Chrome diopside also aids in dealing with aggression and is useful in smoothing over disputes.
Typically yellow, brown or gray to colorless. Less often blue, green, black, translucent white, pink, violet, orange, purple and red.
The diamond’s characteristic "fire" makes it desirable as jewelry. Diamonds have been known to humankind and used as decorative items since ancient times. Perhaps the earliest symbolic use of diamonds was as the eyes of Hindu devotional statues. The earth’s hardest stone, it promotes personal growth, spiritual lessons, perfecting of self as well as resilience and perseverance. Diamonds are the symbol of innocence and constancy. Diamonds manifest abundance and strengthen the properties of other stones. They are used today in most engagement rings in the U.S. The diamond was once thought to endow its wearer with superior strength and courage.
Almost half of all diamonds come from central and southern Africa, although sources have been discovered in Canada, India, Russia, Brazil, Australia, and the U.S.
All shades of green
The emerald gemstone is one of the many forms of Beryl and it is said to be the heart of Ireland. Emerald is a protection stone and it aids in success and prosperity. It is a stone of prophecy and the symbol of hope and preserving love. It also promotes memory and learning and can be used as a tranquilizer for a troubled mind. Emerald promotes harmony, wisdom and love. Giving your lover an Emerald will bring them closer if your motives are pure.
Green is the color associated with the element of earth. It is the color of life and growth. The earth element symbolizes a solid foundation and roots deep within the soil, grounding and calming you. Earth represents fertility and stability.
Emeralds come from three main emerald mining areas in Colombia and they are also found in Brazil, Canada, Egypt, and numerous other countries including the U.S.
Purple, blue, teal, green, yellow, clear
Fluorite comes in a large variety of colors and has been called "the most colorful mineral in the world". Many samples of fluorite glow under ultraviolet light. The mirrored pyramid octahedron formation is common in fluorite crystals. Fluorite is known as the "Genius Stone".
It enhances spiritual energy work, focuses the will and balances the psyche. Fluorite helps in aligning all the chakra, and it is a powerful healing stone. The focus of the healing may be emotional, physical, spiritual, etc., depending upon the color of the fluorite.
Fluorite increases concentration, helps with decision making, and is said to absorb and neutralize negative vibrations. The calm and serene energy of blue fluorite can bring inner peace and establish emotional balance. Green fluorite represents growth and adventure. It is helpful in dealing with high stress situations, and is also a good grounding stone.
Fluorite is a widely occurring mineral which is found in large deposits in many areas. Fluorite has been the state mineral of Illinois since 1965. At that time, Illinois was the largest producer of fluorite in the United States; however, the last Illinois mine closed in 1995.
Fluorite from the Rogerley Mine in Durham, England fluoresce a bright blue under ultraviolet light. They are also a color changing fluorite, going from an emerald green to a cobalt blue, depending on the light source, be it artificial or sunlight.
Deep red, deep orange, burgandy
Garnet aids in healing, especially blood related diseases. It promotes focus in meditation, and personal power. Garnet can be used to make a person popular and bring constancy to friendships. Garnet is also known for stimulating success in business. It is a stone of purity and truth as well as a symbol of love and compassion. Garnet helps increase your personal magnetism and if worn for a job interview, can help the interviewer decide in your favor. Wear or carry one to ensure your safety in a dangerous situation. Legend says to give a garnet to a close friend at a time of parting ensures that the two will meet again in this life.
Occurs in Australia, United States, China, and Western India, Bohemia and various other places.
Mint green to deep emerald green
One of the most sought after varieties of gem garnet is the fine green grossular garnet from Kenya and Tanzania called Tsavorite. Green garnet is a very passionate crystal that has a grounding effect, while increasing the feelings of the comforts of home. It also aids in reaching the higher levels of balance and growth in spirituality and rational thinking. It restores your vitality and passion for life, giving you extra energy and stay ability. Green garnets are associated with bringing peace, pureness of thought, unobscured mental capacity, and creativity.
Tsavorite was discovered in the 1960s in the Tsavo area of Kenya, from which the gem takes its name.
Demantoid, another green garnet, has been called the "emerald of the Urals" from its occurrence there, and is one of the most prized of garnet varieties.
Yellowish brown with gold flecks
Goldstone is a type of glittering glass made in the presence of a reducing flame. The most common form of goldstone is reddish-brown, due to the presence of tiny crystals of metallic copper. Some people have the misconception that a man-made stone is less effective than a natural gemstone when used in a metaphysical sense. This isn't really true. Because lab grown or man-made gemstones are made up of the same chemical compounds as most natural
occurring gemstones, there is little difference in their mineral properties.
Goldstone is used to draw money, especially through commerce or the collection of monies owed, and is often used in money spells. By attracting positive energies, goldstone encourages a positive attitude and reduces tension.
Goldstone is said to protect the center of the body and it stimulates you physically. It is said to stabilize emotions, and revitalize and energize the entire body. It can also help to keep you grounded. It is said that goldstone assists in astral travel.
Silvery black, red
Hematite is the mineral form of iron oxide, and it occurs in different forms. Gray hematite is called specular hematite. Red hematite is called oolitic hematite. When the red occurs as a powder it is called red ocher.
Hematite is a very strong protection stone. It helps with the pain of grief. It enhances focus, courage, optimism, trust, stability, and balance. It is also believed to bring good luck and good health. Hematite gives protection and absorbs negativity. It is a great stone for grounding. It calms and soothes, reducing stress.
Hematite is a great stone for students, mathematicians and engineers. It repels negativity when worn as a charm or as jewelry. Native Americans are said to have used it in their war paint. In the 18th century, Europeans wore it as mourning jewelry.
Hematite quartz can help with problem solving by stimulating the creative thought process. It gives a sense of tranquility and order that aids in working out differences between people as well. It calms emotions such as anxiety and can assist in raising self esteem. Hematite enhances focus, optimism, trust, and balance. Combined with quartz, these crystals provide grounding and stability to many situations.
Gray hematite is usually found in places where there has been standing water or mineral hot springs, such as those in Yellowstone National Park in the United States. Also found in Italy, England, and Brazil. Red hematite is found in sandstone, shale, and clay.
Herkimer Diamond Quartz
Clear and clear with black anthraxolite inclusions
Herkimer diamond is the name used for double-terminated quartz crystal gemstones found in Herkimer County, NY. Many of these crystals are extremely clear. Like other record keeper gemstones, Herkimer diamonds are thought to have the ability to hold ancient information that has been stored inside them.
Herkimer diamonds can be used for alignment between a person and their environment, or to create a bond with another person or group. They are thought by some traditions to be the most powerful of the quartz crystals. They are often used in meditation and past life recovery.
Most common is Green, but also comes in white, lavender and multi-colors
The term jade is applied to two different metamorphic rocks: Nephrite and Jadeite. Both were used from prehistoric periods for carving. Jade is said to have a host of different meanings, depending on the mind-set of the person wearing it. Many elements of the Chinese language are connected to Jade. The word "ritual", as it is written, is "to serve the gods with Jade".
Jade helps with serenity, inner peace and balance, and good fortune. It promotes the perfection of self and connection to Spirit. It strengthens mental faculties and clear reasoning. It is a protective stone, guarding against accidents and misfortune. It improves dream remembrance and assists dream solving. As with many stones that are green in color, it is said to attract money.
Found mainly in Guatemala, China, Burma, and Canada.
Reds, Browns, Yellows, and Blues
Jasper is known to have been a favorite gem in the ancient world; its name can be traced back in Hebrew, Assyrian, Persian, Greek and Latin. The name means "spotted or speckled stone". Some types of Jasper include Dalmatian, Picture, and Picasso.
Jasper awakens the mind and heart to new ideas and allows one to be flexible with others. All the jaspers have some properties of enhancing emotional balance, nurturing, and protection. It is a stone of gentleness and relaxation. It helps promote openness to new ideas. Jasper makes a powerful protection against unsettling ideas or people and it eases stress, making it a wonderful stone to have near you. Jasper is a very good protection stone and is recommended in situations where protection or extra luck is needed. All colors of Jasper help balance the vibrations in your body. Legend says that Jasper drives away evil spirits. Jasper is known as the supreme nurturer stone.
Found worldwide, a wide variety of named jaspers is found in the western areas of the Unites States
Clear, white to gray with blue, gold, and green iridescence
Labradorite strengthens the will and inner convictions. It can help in combating addictions. It is good for alignment, spiritual connection, and transformation. Labradorite is known as a gemstone of destiny because it can open your psychic abilities by connecting you to the Universe.
It is said that if you sleep with Labradorite it will help you to receive prophetic dreams. It is excellent for strengthening intuition. Labradorite regulates metabolism and can help in weight loss. Labradorite can combine creativity, intellect and wisdom to aid in problem solving. It enhances patience and energizes the body to increase productivity. Labradorite was historically worn as a good luck charm.
Originally found in Labrador, Canada, but also mined in Africa, Australia and other areas. Spectrolite, the most valued type of Labradorite, comes from Finland.
Dark blue with white veins and gold flecks
Lapis lazuli has been mined in Afghanistan for over 6000 years, and some the best quality is still found there. It is also found in South America and Russia. The finest color is intense blue with small flecks of golden pyrite. Patches of pyrite help in identifying the stone as genuine and do not detract from its value.
Lapis lazuli a very strong clairvoyance stone. It helps to enhance and remember dreams. It is traditionally believed to increase mental clarity, virility, and calm. It is also useful in relieving depression and promoting spirituality. It is a high intensity stone which cleanses the spirit to bring out inner truth and peace. Some believed that dreaming of lapis would foretell love that would be forever faithful.
Wearing Lapis Lazuli can help with channeling. The ancient Egyptians used Lapis as a symbol of truth. During ancient times Lapis was ground up and used for medicinal purposes as well as a cosmetic. The stone can be used to connect two people in ways that go beyond just friendship. It is said to have powers of the night sky and is popular for scrying and for messages from beyond.
Clear with red or silver flecks
Lepidochrosite or lepidocrocite is a variety of quartz with inclusions of hematite, iron, and calcite. I think the crystal looks like it has tiny drops of blood at the tip, so I call it a blood crystal. It is also called red fire quartz.
Lepidochrosite is a stone that brings love and integrity to a relationship. It can lessen distraction and confusion and help you to think clearly. It can banish negativity and brings lightness to your thoughts. Lepidochrosite also eliminates distraction and confusion, helping you to think more clearly and thus lessons negative thinking and mental habits. It can alleviate anger and fear, especially hidden fear, in order to allow the soul to expand into higher dimensions.
Lepidochrosite can be used to help manifest your spiritual needs. It can also heighten spiritual energies. It is used mystically to increase ESP and bring knowledge from your past lives. It can be used along with clear quartz for metaphysical healing and bringing about renewed energy. It is believed to aid spiritual growth, clarity, communication and integration.
Shades of green with bands and swirls
Malachite is a copper carbonate hydroxide mineral that was used as a pigment in green paints until about 1800. Archaeological evidence shows it has been used as a gemstone and for ornamental designs for over 3000 years. The most prized pieces have intricate bands of color. Often these bands form "eyes" within a piece. It is the copper in malachite that gives it the green color.
Malachite promotes success whether in business or love. It raises one's spirits and increases hope, health and happiness. It attracts physical and material benefits. Malachite amplifies your mood, whether positive or negative, so care should be given when wearing it as jewelry. Malachite is believed to be a strong protector of children.
Malachite is found throughout the world including many countries in Africa, as well as Russia and the United States. Today Zaire is the most important malachite producer. Other deposits are in Zambia, Namibia, Australia, and Chile, but it is found almost everywhere in the form of small encrustations, along with azurite.
Moldavite is found almost exclusively in the Southern Bohemian region of the Czech Republic. It is named after the area in which it is found near the Moldau River. Most scientists now agree that moldavites were formed during the impact of a giant meteorite approximately 14 million years ago. Splatters of the melted material from the impact were cooled as they fell back to earth to create the distinctively patterned green stone. Moldavite was prized as an stone of good fortune, and was often formed into arrowheads and amulets by ancient people of the area.
Moldavite is a high energy stone with powerful abilities. It is often used in lucid dream work, meditation, and past life regression. It can increase intuition and and spiritual communication. Moldavite is helpful in determining the focus of reiki healing, and is considered a stone of rejuvenation and renewal. It can aid in the balance between us and our environment, and is associated with the earth element.
Clear to milky white, gray, yellow, peach
Moonstone's name is derived from a visual schiller effect caused by light diffraction within the layers of the stone. Moonstone helps with emotional stress problems and aids with feminine energy. It is believed to bring good fortune and to balance yin/yang. Legend says that Moonstone is a highly prized gift for lovers as it arouses tender passion.
Moonstone was used in jewelry by the Romans who believed that the stone was formed from the light of the moon. It is also a talisman of good fortune. In ancient times, it was thought that the future could be foretold if you held the stone in your mouth during a full moon. It absorbs negativity, promotes confidence and psychic opening.
Moonstone is a very personal stone. It is a reflection of the person who wears it, and only shows the true self. It is known as the mother stone and is sacred to the Goddess.
Moonstone is found in many countries including Burma, Sri Lanka, Norway, and Canada.
The gemstone called rainbow moonstone is actually the colorless form of labradorite.
Most common is solid black, or brown with colored bands
Onyx is a chalcedony quartz that has a fine texture and black color; however some onyx also displays white bands or ribbons against a black or brown background. It can help release negative emotions such as sorrow and grief. It is used to end unhappy or bothersome relationships. It is helpful in letting go of attachments, and releases you from the past.
It is grounding stone as well as a balancing one. It is used to deflect the negativity of others. Onyx is reputed to improve concentration and devotion and is often used in rosaries. It is valuable in difficult times and enhances the self. It is also supposed to cure nightmares, fantasies and visions. It effectively wards off the evil. Onyx jewelry is worn to defend against negativity.
Onyx is mined in Brazil, India, California and Uruguay.
Opals range from clear through white, gray, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, magenta, rose, pink, slate, olive, brown, and black. Of these, white and greens are the most common.
Australia produces around 97% of the world’s opals. Nevada produces a wide variety of precious black, crystal, white, fire, and lemon opals. Other significant deposits of precious opal around the world can be found in the Czech Republic, Nicaragua and Ethiopia. The water content of Opal is usually between three and ten percent, but can be as high as twenty percent.
Opal promotes psychic opening and development and sensitivity to spirits. They were once considered unlucky by those who feared psychic phenomena. Opal assists in the control of temper and calms the nerves. It aids in the development of psychic ability.
Opals are surrounded with superstition and lore. The opal is considered to be the most ill-fated of all gemstones. Some people believe that opals turn pale in the presence of poison, and lose their shine once their owners die. These superstitions surrounding opals did not discourage the development of a counter folklore which cast the stone as a symbol of hope, innocence, and purity.
Australian Aboriginal Shamans use opals to invoke visions during ceremonial vision quests and dream time. They believe the opal represents something an ancestor left behind as a sign of his or her presence.
Clear with rainbow prisms
Optical calcite is a good cleansing stone and can amplify environmental energy. It is also restorative and helps to accelerate psychic development and spiritual growth. It provides
insight in negative situations and aids in clarification during confusing emotional states.
Iceland spar is clear variety of optical calcite originally found in Iceland. It was often used in experiments involving light polarization, as it is well known for its double refraction qualities. It easily divides into rhomboid shapes. Some historians have speculated that it is the original sunstone mentioned in medieval texts (solarsteinn), that Vikings used to tell the direction of the sun on overcast days.
An international team of researchers led by Guy Ropars of the University of Rennes in Brittany, marshalling experimental and theoretical evidence, says they have the answer. Vikings, they argue, used transparent calcite crystal -- also known as Iceland spar -- to fix the true bearing of the Sun, to within a single degree of accuracy. This naturally occurring stone has the capacity to "depolarise" light, filtering and fracturing it along different axes, the researchers explained.
Here's how it works: "If you put a dot on top of the crystal and look through it from below, two dots will appear. Then you rotate the crystal until the two points have exactly the same intensity or darkness. At that angle, the upward-facing surface indicates the direction of the Sun," Ropars explained by phone. "A precision of a few degrees can be reached even under dark twilight conditions. Vikings would have been able to determine with precision the direction of the hidden Sun." He added, "The human eye has a fine-tuned capacity to distinguish between shades of contrast, and thus is able to see when the two spots are truly identical."
Shades of green
Peridot is one of the few gemstones that comes in only one color. The intensity and tint of the green depends on how much iron is contained in the crystal, so the color of individual gems can vary from yellow-green to olive green. It is the only gemstone found in meteorites.
Peridot has been used as a power stone for millennia. Its powers include health, protection, peace, and success. Peridot helps to heal a damaged ego by the lessening of jealousy, anger and fear and heals emotional wounds. It is used to ward off the evil effects of certain planets. It favors those who follow intellectual pursuits. Peridot can give you common sense in emotional issues and protect you from hurt. It protects against evil spirits and nightmares.
Sources of Peridot include Egypt, Arizona and Hawaii, Burma, Australia, Norway, South Africa
Clear with inclusions of black, green, red, etc.
Phantom quartz has lighter or darker inclusions inside a clear crystal that reveal the earlier layers from the beginning of the formation. A phantom crystal is created when the growth is interrupted, a thin dusting of another mineral such as hematite or chlorite settles on the terminated point, and then the crystal resumes its growth. The crystal eventually displays one or more layers of these mineral deposits resembling a point. Each layer represents a different stage in the crystal's growth, and each stage can last for hundreds of thousands of years.
Black phantoms combine the power properties of clear quartz along with the grounding that black quartz provides. This makes them a great stone to wear.
Legend says that green phantoms can grant the wearer access to alternate realms. Whether this is actually true or not, green phantoms do represent the earth element and can provide grounding and stability. This is something you might need to facilitate your return to the here and now.
Phantom quartz can increase creativity and provide inspiration for new ideas. They can help with access to past lives and aid in recovery of lost memories. By allowing us to put the past into perspective, phantoms can bring clarity to both past and future life issues.
Pale green, yellow-green, brownish yellow
Also known as Cape Emerald, this pale green stone has the distinction of being the first mineral named after a person. It was discovered in 1789 and named for Colonel Hendrik Von Prehn, commander of the military forces of the Dutch colony at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa. Prehnite’s bright, luminescent, swirling green colors make it an extremely attractive collector’s gem.
Prehnite is a stone of unconditional love. It can enhance spiritual knowledge and growth. It can connect the mind with the heart to help you achieve the best outcome for the good. It strengthens intuition and perception and stimulates the third eye chakra. It is also a very calming stone and can give you inner peace. Wearing one will increase vision and meditation skills, and provide protection. Prehnite helps to find the reason for illness and is often used to help with asthma and other lung diseases.
Deposits are found in Australia, China, Scotland, South Africa, and the USA.
Quartz is the second most common mineral on Earth. Quartz has been used since prehistoric times as an adornment and a ritual tool in Europe and the Middle East, and also ancient America. It was most often used for different types of jewelry and carvings, including engraved gems and rock crystal vessels.
Quartz has been identified in Australian Aboriginal mythology and also Native American lore. It has been found in burial chambers in many European locations, including Newgrange and Carrowmore in Ireland. The Irish word for quartz is grian cloch, which means stone of the sun.
Quartz crystal is the most abundant gemstone in the earth's crust. It is found on every continent. Clear quartz is considered a power stone and can enhance the metaphysical properties of other stones. Quartz Crystal has a similar vibration as humans. Using a crystal to meditate and wearing or keeping a crystal helps to a better understanding of yourself.
Quartz amplifies and directs energy and builds energy pathways. It can strengthen the energies of anything it is put with, and can be used to channel energy and send it out to other stones. The resonating quality is the reason that quartz was originally used in radios and other transmitters, and manufactured crystals are still used in electronic devices today. .
Record Keeper Crystal
Various types of stones
Record keeper crystals usually have raised or incised triangles or diamonds on one or more of their faces. These crystals are said to contain ancient knowledge and profound secrets of the universe. Many people claim to be able to access this information from their record keeper crystals. The crystals can also be used for personal meditation and to achieve balance and enlightenment.
Light to dark pink with white and darker bands
The pink color of Rhodochrosite is caused by the element manganese and it is formed when manganese is dissolved by ground water and combines with a carbonate material and then drips off the ceiling of caves and crevices deep underground. Rhodochrosite occurs as a manganese mineral in the silver mines.
Its powers include drawing love to the wearer and it helps to release past psychological issues. It inspires forgiveness, heals emotional scars, and attracts love. It also helps one face reality and new situations. Rhodochrosite is thought to relieve stress and is used by healers to cleanse the aura. It is said to improve eyesight. The Incas believed that it is the blood of their former kings and queens that was turned to stone.
It is found in Argentina, Peru, and Romania. The Sweet Home Mine near Alma, Colorado produces the highly prized and rare red crystals which are found only in a few places on earth.
The Rose Quartz color is usually due to trace amounts of titanium, iron, or manganese. It can bring calm during times of stress. It helps us understand the meaning of friendship and is excellent for working with trauma or crisis.
A gift of Rose Quartz is a gift of friendship. Rose Quartz opens the heart to love. Carry a Rose Quartz with you at all times to help bring patience and understanding to any situation. It is also said to stimulate the imagination and the intellect. It is a very healing stone for internal wounds, bitterness and sorrows. It makes one more open to beauty and it brings joy to the heart.
It is said washing the face in water charged by Rose Quartz will help fade wrinkles and keep the skin young. Since ancient times, women have kept Rose Quartz under their pillow to maintain their youthful appearance. It is said that most teachers of magic like to wear Rose Quartz
In crystal form (rarely found) it is called pink quartz. The first crystals were found in Maine but most crystals on the market come from Brazil.
Blood red to dark pink
Next to diamonds, rubies are the hardest gemstones. Rubies are composed of corundum. Corundum comes in a variety of colors, but when it is red, it is always a ruby. Legend says that rubies will change color according to the health of the wearer. This story probably originates from the fact that rubies and sapphires (both corundums) come in a variety colors. Ruby stimulates the heart chakra. It is believed by some cultures that if you own a ruby gemstone, you will never lose your wealth.
Rubies are today the stone most associated with love. To own a ruby is to have contentment and peace. The Ruby is a symbol of friendship and love when given as a gift. It is also the symbol of vitality and royalty. Some gemstone healers suggest you place a ruby under your pillow to ward off bad dreams and improve lucid dreaming. They also say that ruby rings should be worn on the left hand to receive the life force.
Most rubies are mined in Myanmar, formerly Burma, and other parts of Asia and Africa. Some high quality rubies have recently been found in Kenya.
Red, metallic gray, gold, black
Rutile crystals have many different forms and colors. They range from metallic mirrored crystals, to dark red, to golden yellow needles. Rutile crystals are commonly seen occurring together naturally with quartz in geological specimens. Rutile is a mineral composed primarily of titanium dioxide, and was once sold as "Titania", which is the old-fashioned chemical name for this oxide. Rutile often forms needle inclusions inside other minerals, especially in quartz. The inclusions appear as long and slender straw-like crystals in red, gold, and black. This combination is known as Rutilated Quartz.
Rutile can help with understanding problem solving by stimulating the creative thought process. It is said that it gives a sense of tranquility and order that aids in working out differences between people as well. Combined with quartz, these crystals provide grounding and stability to many situations.
Dark blue to light blue
Sapphires of other colors are always referred to with that color. Blue is by far the most popular color. Like Ruby, Sapphire is a Corundum. The most valuable are from Kashmir. Sapphires with inclusions of tiny needles and cut as a cabochon produce Star Sapphires. Padparadscha is the name for a rare orange-pink variety.
Sapphire symbolizes sincerity and devotion. The stone is often used in an engagement ring because it represents faithfulness. It promotes purity of mind, serenity, joy, and peace. It opens the mind to beauty and love and removes confusion and mistrust. It is often called the stone of destiny and the symbol of heaven. It is said to protect against the evil eye. Wearing a Sapphire can help fulfill your dreams and desires. Great Britain’s Crown Jewels have many large blue sapphires because they are believed to be symbols of a wise ruler.
Sapphires are found in India, Burma, Ceylon, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Brazil and Africa.
Siberian Blue Quartz
Siberian blue quartz is a lab grown quartz that was originally created in Russian. It is created using a hydrothermal process. It has identical properties to natural quartz crystal and cobalt has been added to create the deep blue color.
Siberian blue quartz enhances visualization and meditation techniques and is often used by psychics. It has a calming influence and can help dampen excess energy and noise. Siberian blue quartz can also be used as a past life regression tool.
Some people have the misconception that a man-made stone is less effective than a natural gemstone when used in a metaphysical sense. This isn't really true. Because lab grown or man-made gemstones are made up of the same chemical compounds as most natural occurring gemstones, there is little difference in their mineral properties.
From the ISG:
"Creating gemstones in a lab is an art that must be learned and perfected using imagination and skill. Lab created gemstones are not imitations, they are newly created gemstones that are of the same make up as the mined gemstones. So by definition, gemstones created in a lab cannot be called synthetic because rather than imitate a gemstone...they ARE gemstones.
It fact, quartz has been hydrothermally grown for the electronics industry since the time of World War II. As a result the perfection of the crystal growth is so refined that the ability to identify hydrothermal quartz is virtually impossible without scientific equipment."
From the GIA:
"The hydrothermal growth process is slow and expensive. But it’s the only method for successfully growing created quartz. This process requires heat and pressure that mimics the conditions deep in the earth, resulting in the formation of natural gems. Nutrients are dissolved in a water solution, and then the crystals form as the solution cools."
Gray to warm brown translucent
Like other quartz gems, it is a silicon dioxide crystal, with a small amount of iron impurity which gives it the distinctive color. Smoky Quartz is an excellent grounding and anchoring stone. It helps you to relax and release tension. It instills balance and harmony and can bring you peace. Smoky Quartz can also calm people thought of as stubborn or willful. It is the perfect gemstone to help with meditation. The stone grounds your energies very gently. It is a good stone to have in an office where team work is important. Other stones may attract money, but Smokey Quartz helps you to keep it. It is nature's stone of endurance. Smokey Quartz is connected with the sounds of the universe. It can make you more aware of sounds, including telepathic sounds.
A very dark brown to black opaque variety is known as Morion. This is found in Poland and the Ukraine. Cairngorm is a variety found in Scotland. It usually has a smoky yellow-brown color.
Black and white with snowflakes spots
Pure obsidian is usually dark in appearance, though the color varies depending on the presence of impurities. In some stones, the inclusion of small, white, clustered crystals in the black glass produce a blotchy or snowflake pattern. It has the property of showing a different appearance according to how it is cut. When cut in one direction it is a beautiful jet black; when cut across another direction it is glistening gray. Apache tears are small rounded obsidian nuggets embedded within a grayish-white perlite matrix. In ancient times it was often used to make cutting tools, and as such, Obsidian can have a forceful cutting reality.
Snowflake Obsidian has very similar properties to Black Obsidian, and can be used for a softer touch. Obsidian helps with loneliness, isolation and rejection. Snowflake Obsidian is a stone of purity. It balances mind body and spirit. It is considered a good detoxification stone. The blackness of this stone enhances the ability to reach your inner self. It is one of the earliest known stones to be used for scrying.
Obsidian can be found in Canada, Greece, Italy, Iceland, Kenya, the U.S., and other areas with volcanic activity.
Deep blue with white patches
Sodalite is a beautiful deep royal blue and usually contains white or grayish inclusions of calcite. It is very similar to lapis lazuli and is often used in place of it. The name sodalite reflects its sodium content.
Sodalite promotes peace and harmony, psychic development and clairvoyance. Sodalite is a good stone for oversensitive and defensive people as it improves courage and self-esteem. It balances and stills the mind and helps promote logical and rational thought. Gemstone Therapists use sodalite to purify the aura. It is believed that the sodalite absorbs and neutralizes disharmony. It also neutralizes negative thoughts and emotions directed toward you by others. It is a wonderful stone for creative personalities, and is considered extra lucky for writers.
Found in Canada, Arkansas, Romania, Greenland, South America, as well as other places.
Brown and yellow with shiny gold bands
Tiger's Eye is primarily composed of silicon dioxide and is colored mainly by iron oxide. It exhibits a changing luster from light reflection. Tiger 's Eye gems are generally cut as cabochons, but are also used as round beads in jewelry.
Tiger's Eye is said to help convert anxiety, fear, and obsession into practicality and logic. It increases confidence and is an aid to achieving clarity. It is beneficial when working with groups. Tiger's Eye is used for protection when traveling, and for protecting cars and other forms of transportation. Tiger's Eye can release tension and inhibitions. It can enhance the ability to acquire wealth. Legend says that if you keep a Tiger's Eye in your wallet, you will never be penniless.
Tiger's eye it is mined primarily in South Africa, Sri Lanka, India, Brazil, and Australia.
Yellow, gold, and various other colors, some natural such as blue
Pure topaz is colorless and transparent but is usually tinted by impurities. Imperial topaz is usually gold or yellow. Many gold or pale topazes are treated to make them bright yellow, gold, pink or violet colored. Blue topaz is found in Texas, but not mined there commercially. Naturally occurring blue topaz is quite rare. Typically, colorless, gray or pale yellow and blue material is heat treated and irradiated in order to produce a more desired darker blue. Mystic topaz is colorless topaz that has been artificially coated giving it the desired rainbow effect. Some say topaz comes from the Greek topazos, meaning "a precious stone". Others say the name comes from the Sanskrit word for fire. In folklore it was believed to calm a bad temper. It was also ground into powder and used as a cure for insomnia.
A Topaz under your pillow can prevent nightmares. It is said to help mood swings, fears, and depression. It can be used to achieve enlightenment and clarity of thought, and to change unwanted behavior. In ancient times it was worn to protect from injury and give the wearer great strength. Topaz can increase your attraction to other people and help bring about your desires.
Topaz can be found in many countries including Brazil, the U.S., Sri Lanka, Australia, and Mexico.
Bluish green to sky blue, sometimes with dark veins.
Turquoise was among the first gems to be mined, and while many historic sites have been depleted, some are still worked to this day. Turquoise is often recovered as a byproduct of copper mining operations, especially in the United States. It has long been prized by Native Americans and holds strong symbolism for them. Mt. Taylor in New Mexico, also known as Turquoise Mountain, is called “Tso odzil” by the Navajo. Legend says that this sacred mountain was fastened to earth with a stone knife and covered with a blue sky blanket decorated with turquoise.
Turquoise can fade in bright sun and is affected by the sweat and oil from your hands. It is said that turquoise will change color when worn by someone who is ill, and this is why it is known for taking on the characteristics of the person who owns it.
Turquoise has been used since ancient times as a talisman and a protection amulet. In many cultures it symbolized wealth and prosperity. Turquoise can bring peace and good fortune to your household. A gift of turquoise to a friend can protect them from negative energy and harmful intentions. As one of the oldest known gemstones, it carries timeless wisdom and age-old truths.
Turquoise protects against accidents and is considered a traveler’s stone. It is good for increased awareness and verbal skills. Some say it brings good fortune and renewed health. It symbolizes honesty and self worth. Turquoise works well for a vision quest.
It is mined mostly in Iran, the Sinai Peninsula, China, Mexico, and the Southwestern United States.
Mottled green and pink
Unakite is altered granite composed of pink feldspar, green epidote, and colorless quartz. It was first discovered in the Unakas mountains of North Carolina. Unakite helps with rebirth and past life issues and can aid in spiritual growth. It is also used to uncover deception. It is also believed to help release people who have experienced inhibited growth. It is a common stone used in ritual and spell casting. It is often used to make pendulums. Unakite can give you extra patience and allows you to forgive and forget more easily. Holding unakite while searching for lost items can sometimes turn them up quickly.
Unakite can be found as pebbles in the beach rock of Lake Superior. It occurs in Virginia where it is found in the river valleys, having been washed down from the Blue Ridge Mountains. Unakite is found in South Africa, Sierra Leone, Brazil, and China as well.
Green, white, and pink
Tourmaline is distinguished by its three-sided prisms; no other common mineral has three sides. The watermelon tourmaline is a rare variety that displays three different colors in the same crystal. This variety is one of the most desirable of tourmalines. Watermelon tourmaline is used by crystal healers to encourage a calm, centered state of mind. The green feeds the life force, while the pink soothes and calms. It attracts inspiration and friendship, and protects the wearer against misfortune. It grounds high-frequency energies. It carries a high electrical charge and if rubbed briskly one end becomes positive and one negative. The energy can then be directed where desired.
Found in South Africa, Brazil, Sri Lanka, and Maine, California, and China.
*I put up this page to help inform people about gemstones in general and make it available on one page. The information comes from crystal cards, books, websites, and a bit of my own personal experience. There is a huge amount of information available about the various gemstones and their properties and meanings. I came across so many websites that posted dire warnings about copying the same material, that it is hard to tell who copied from whom.
All I can say is that much of the information I have used here seems to be generally agreed upon by many different sources. I suggest you do your own research if you want to explore the meanings more thoroughly. Stone properties and descriptions are for informational purposes only and do not offer any guaranteed outcomes. Also, they are not intended as a substitute for medical care.