Why I Love Chrysoprase [kris-uh-preyz]

July 17, 2015

 

The meaning of Chrysoprase comes from two words, chrys being the Greek for 'gold or yellow' and prase from the Greek for 'leek', referring to the green coloring of it. 

I've always gravitated towards shades of aqua, specifically shades of the ocean. Growing up with a twin sister our parents would sometimes dress us the same but we were given the option of color.  I always remember picking out a shade of blue!  These days I tend to wear a lot of neutral colors but I love a pop of color with my accessories. It's an easy way to add some personality without fully committing my entire outfit. 

Chrysoprase, a rare seafoam green/blue variety of chalcedony quartz has always been one of my favorite stones! the color varies varies from apple green to seafoam to deep blue. I still remember happening upon it at my first major gem show in Tucson 9 years ago. It was love at first sight!  

Here it is in all it's glory, raw and uncut. How gorgeous is this! When I see beautiful gems like these  I immediately start designing new pieces in my head. Stones for jewelry designers are like fabric for an interior designer; they are often a source of inspiration and a wonderful starting point for a new project.  

 

                                                       Chrysoprase Raw Stacked Stone

 

 

Here are some of the original strands of beads I purchased in Tucson. I'm too in love to part with them! 

Chrysoprase Bead Strand

SCIENCE 

The darker varieties of chrysoprase are also referred to as "prase" or chorite included quartz. One of the reasons that chrysoprase is so rare is due to the fact that it is a cryptocrystalline, this means that instead of being formed by large six sided crystals, the size of the crystals are extremely small and invisible to the naked eye. This sets it apart from rock crystal, amethyst, citrine, and the other varieties of crystalline quartz which are basically transparent and formed from easily recognized six-sided crystals.This attribute gives is much rarer in nature, as well as more beautiful. Unlike emerald which owes its green color to the presence of chromium, the color of chrysoprase is due to trace amounts of nickel compounds in the form of very small inclusions.

 

HISTORY

Chrysoprase has been known to man since ancient times.  It was valued and formed into cameos and intaglios by the Greeks and Romans. Ancient Egyptians also saw the value of this fine gemstone and it was part of decorations that adorned the pharaohs.

During the Middle Ages Europe used Chrysoprase in jewelry and it was extremely prized and valued. It was mined in Silesia which is now present day Czech Republic until the supplies were exhausted. Peter Carl Faberge created many works using this valuable gemstone.

Besides it being used as ornamental jewelry, it was said to have many mystical and medicinal properties. For instance, during the Middle Ages it was used to reduce internal pain, as well as to strengthen vision. It was also used to mend broken hearts and help one concentrate or meditate. For astrology aficionados, Chrysoprase is given as a gift to Gemini’s, Libra’s and Cancer’s.

HEALING

If you are drawn to stones for their healing and spiritual powers it is thought that this gem brings through the vibration of divine truth, and promotes joy and happiness, while healing the heart of energies of depression and anxiety. It is said to have metaphysical properties for healing as well as being a stone to attract new love and abundance and prosperity.This stone will empower you to understand more deeply, the concepts around divine truth, as you center yourself within your heart. It promotes feelings of love and of forgiveness, and releases ego based negativity associated with co-dependent relationships.

SHOP OUR CHRYSOPRASE PIECES

 

                                                                                

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