Astounding Azurite Facts That You Haven't Heard Of Before! | Kidadl


Astounding Azurite Facts That You Haven't Heard Of Before!

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Azurite, a crystal so mesmerizing, is also known as 'the stone of heaven'.

It remarkably embodies the deep blue color that is not possessed by any other stone of its kind. Azurite has been around for ages, and in history, only royalty had access to it.

But what makes this crystal so special? Was it popular only because of its beauty or does it have any hidden talents too? Well, don’t worry because this article will give you answers to all your questions.

Azurite crystals are used as ornamental stones, and many people prefer azurite crystals as a display piece or have the azurite stone embedded as an ornamental stone in a piece of jewelry. Copper ores help in the formation of azurite. It is surprising to see copper ore turning into a gem material. Azurite paints are blue in color since these small crystals have natural pigments of color. In ancient Chinese practices, they believed that this minor ore had healing powers due to the beautiful pigment. Azurite was a popular mineral among ancient Egyptians and is now easily found in New Mexico. An azurite jewelry box is something that is very special. The deep blue color of an azurite jewelry box makes it look luxurious. Azurite has a Mohs hardness of only three and a half to four, which makes it soft. The Mohs scale indicates the hardness of a mineral. The best azurite crystals are found at Tsumeb Mine, Namibia and the crystals found here can reach sizes up to 10 in (25.4 cm).

In ancient Egypt and Atlanta, it was assumed that the crystal had great potential, and the secrets of this stone were only known by the highest priest and priestess. We might not be fully aware of the mystery of this stone, but we can look into some astounding facts about azurite that we’re sure you have not heard before. So, the next time you wear jewelry made from this beautiful blue crystal, you can flaunt not just the stone but your knowledge of it too!

After reading interesting facts about this ornamental stone which is used widely in preparing jewelry pieces, also check diamond facts and facts about the Alabama State gemstone.

Origin Of The Name

There has been some disagreement about where the name azurite is derived from, but one thing that can be said for certain is that its name was given because of its exquisite blue color.

Some sources claim that the name originated from a Latin borrowed Persian word 'lazhward' for the color blue. The word Lazard turned into 'lazurium' and later, 'azurium' which brings us to the present word 'azure'. Other sources say that the word actually originated from the Egyptian word 'azul' but no matter what the actual origin of this word is, it is known for sure that the word was used to describe the deep blue color of the crystal.

Did you know that azurite crystals are generally found near copper deposits?

Mineral And Healing Properties of Azurite

Azurite was made into dust and used in blue paint in ancient Egypt. Later on, the pigment was also used as dyes and the pigment was used as alternatives for eyeshadow in historical times.

In the Middle Ages, azurite paint was popularly used and was the major source of blue shades. Azurite as a source of blue pigment is used even now in countries such as France.

Aside from industrial use, azurite is believed by some to have healing properties to help patients suffering from rheumatic pain. The energy that azurite gives off is highly effective for use in radioactive analysis or in making a pendulum. In this way, it is also believed that it can assist psychics, human mediums, or channels to improve the accuracy with which they can interpret the 'other' world and help maintain objectivity.

Like various minerals found in nature, azurite has also been known for its perceived healing properties in various cultures of the past. Other than the healing properties, this crystal was used for various other requirements as well, including the preparation of blue color pigments. During the Middle Ages as well as the Renaissance era, azurite was ground by people for use as blue-colored paint or as an eye shadow for ornamental purposes.

Another popular use of azurite was to be used as a jewelry stone. The brilliant blue color and shine made the crystal automatically attractive for people. As a result, it was used for the preparation of various jewelry pieces. As a matter of fact, it is also used in the creation of modern-day jewelry pieces in various regions across the world.

Physical Properties Of Azurite

Azurite is actually a copper carbonate hydroxide mineral with a Mohs hardness ranging from three and a half to four, which is relatively soft. This makes it easier for jewelry makers to cut it into shapes and make necklaces, beads, or earrings out of the crystals.

The reason it is a popular choice for making jewelry, aside from the relative ease with which it can be cut, is its azure blue color which is due to the presence of copper. Due to it being so soft, there is always a concern of damage due to abrasion when the mineral is used to make rings, beads, or bracelets.

Azure is one of the two most abundant elements of copper carbonate mineral, the other being green malachite. Malachite is a green, basic carbonate of copper that is far more abundant than the mineral azurite. The combination of azurite malachite is very popular in the world of trade. Both these minerals together in their polished form almost resemble Earth since azurite malachite has an eye-catching blue and green pattern.

It is moderately valued in markets but is extremely popular among mineral collectors, so much so that the demand might soon outrun the supply of these gemstones. Azurite precipitation occurs in porous spaces such as between the breaks and the cavities of subsurface rocks. When water, rich in carbon dioxide, seeps into Earth’s surface it reacts with copper ore present in the Earth’s crust. Over time azurite accumulates under the Earth’s surface and the beautiful mineral is formed. It is mostly found in the areas of Egypt, Russia, Peru, France, Morocco, Zaire, Namibia, Australia, Chile, and the southwestern part of the United States of America.

Talking about how it gets green, azurite is unstable in the air and due to weathering might turn into malachite, turning the blue color into green. Azurite is commonly found in areas with copper deposits and is present above the layer of copper. Other than copper, azurite can be found along with turquoise, malachite, and chrysocolla.

During the Middle Ages, azurite was ground into pigment and used in paints and eye shadow.

Azurite Folklore And Legend

In ancient Egypt and Atlantis, the stone was supposed to be shrouded in mystery and only the highest and mightiest priests had access to the fullest potential of this crystal. This deep blue crystal was said to inspire the clairvoyant abilities of a person.

Other folklores also believe that the vibrant dark-blue color resonated with the frequency of the legendary third-eye chakra and, since the beginning of the earliest civilizations, has supposedly guided souls to enlightenment.

In ancient China, it was called 'the stone of heaven' and it was believed that this stone could open gateways to celestial worlds. In contrast, the Romans and the Greeks were sure that stone possessed healing properties.

In historical times, it was also used as a decorative item because of its otherworldly beauty and was often used as an ornamental stone too.

Did You Know...

Azurite is widely used in many countries for the preparation of jewelry as an ornamental stone. These rocks are also used independently as gemstones as well as an ore of copper.

In various locations where azurite deposits are found along with copper deposits, certain chemical reactions take place resulting in azurite losing some of the hydroxyls it contains. This transforms the azurite to malachite but in the entire process, the crystal-like shape of azurite is retained. In certain circumstances, merely a portion of azurite is transformed to malachite while the remaining azurite retains its original properties. When you see such rocks, they will appear to be blue on one end and green on the other.

In various regions, linarite samples are mistakenly sold as azurite as they both have an extremely similar appearance and texture.

Mineral collectors from across the world covet azurite and jewelers in some regions also use it as a gemstone. Azurite is sometimes also referred to as chessylite, which is the name given to azurite based on the place where it was recognized for the first time.

Azurite has always been an extremely sought-after mineral not only today but in ancient Egypt as well. Ancient Egyptians used to mine the mineral and then grind it down to be used in the form of a pigment. During the Renaissance era as well as during the Middle Ages, azurite served as an extremely essential blue pigment. Though, over time and due to the surrounding conditions, azurite slowly transformed into malachite. This resulted in the blue pigment having a slight green tint during these times.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for azurite facts then why not take a look at characteristics of Mercury, or characteristics of Nickel.

Hemant Oswal
Written By
Hemant Oswal

<p>With global experience in marketing and business development, Hemant is a seasoned professional with a unique perspective. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Commerce from the University of Delhi and a Master's degree in Marketing from The University of Adelaide in Australia. Hemant's work in China, Hong Kong, and Dubai has honed his skills and provided valuable experience. He broadens his understanding of the world through reading non-fiction books and watching documentaries.</p>

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