Monday, 13 May 2013
Malachite - a gorgeous green gemstone with a lot to offer!
I adore Malachite. A weighty gemstone, its green shades and swirling patterns always captivate me. The stone is not only a stunning gemstone, but is mined for its copper bearing properties. It is a copper carbonate and forms radiating crystals in stalagmites and alteration zones round metamorphic intrusions, as well as other methods of formation. The gemstone is opaque and can form into large botroidal or grape like masses. Indeed, huge vases and other sculptures have been carved from single formations of the gemstone. The Hermitage Museum in Russia and Windsor Castle have wonderful examples of these. Prized for millennia, this gorgeous gem has been coveted by ancient civilisations for metal smelting, jewellery, art and pigments. It has been smelted in Israel for over 3000 years! The gemstone is found in many places all over the world. In the UK, it can be found in Cornwall, where copper has also been mined for thousands of years. It occurs in Africa, America, Mexico and The Urals. Most commercial gem Malachite is exported from Africa at the moment. The gem has also been used as a pigment in paints and dyes. Care has to be taken when working with the stone, especially if you are drilling or filing the stone, as breathing in the dust can be dangerous. The stone can be quite brittle, so care must be taken not to drop the gem or knock the stone, as it can break quite easily. This property makes the gemstone well suited to earrings and pendants where the gem is less prone to wear and tear. Ever popular, the stunning green of Malachite is always fresh and exciting! I do hope you will like this montage of Malachite goodies from Folksy sellers. Please just click on the photos for links to the items in the designers shops. Thanks so much for your continued support! Jacqueline x