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Friday, May 9, 2008

Jade

Continually thinking about Gemstones and their properties both physically and metaphysically we would like to explore the properties of Jade today.

Jade is a great stone to use in jewelry as it is nearly as hard as quartz so it is very tough. It has a wonderful luster and brilliance to it that very few other gemstones have. Jade comes in many variations of green, blue, red, and yellow and it is really two different stones both of which have similar variations.

The first stone is referred to as Jadetite consists of sodium and aluminum rich pyroxene, the second Nephrite Jade is composed of calcium and actinolite, scientifically speaking these are two very different stones, and in many eastern cultures the distinction is very important, here in the west we usually just refer to both types as Jade.

The Nephrite Jade has been used in China since the earliest Chinese Dynasties through modern day. It is considered the "Imperial Gem" used in everything from fancy table ware to the grave sites of high ranking officials of the imperial family. This type of Jade was used exclusively in China until about the 1800s at which time Jadeite was brought over from Burma and it quickly replaced the Nephrite and the imperial version of the stone. The white version of this stone was often considered to be more valuable than gold or silver, as it is very rare. The Mayan and Aztec cultures also considered Jade to be more valuable than precious metals.

Most cultures around the world relate Jade to being lucky, protective, courageous, and seductive. Many culture also used it in creating weapons because of its hardness and durability, which is possibly why many felt it was protective and inductive of courage. In Egypt the stone was considered to be the stone of love, inner balance, and harmony.

Many of our favorite pieces use Jade, here are a few things to check out:
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