Thursday, December 8, 2011


Chrysocolla Formation

Today’s Rock Review features a “hometown” gem for those of us hailing from Pennsylvania, home state of Layne Designs Studio. It’s Chrysocolla!
Geology Buzz
Chysocolla ranges from blue to green in color, often appearing in lovely sea foam or teal tones. Because of its color, it’s sometimes confused for Turquoise, however it is a different gem altogether. It is a secondary ore of Copper. It forms in oxidation zones in veins of Copper ores over long periods of time as oxygen chemically changes the composition of the ores. In these veins it can form either as a crust or a rounded mass. Often, it forms along side or in conglomeration with other minerals such as Quartz, Limonite, Azurite, Malachite, Turquoise and Cuprite. That is why Chysocolla gemstone will often contain veins and traces of these gems as well.
It registers a 2.5-3.5 on Moh’s scale of hardness and therefore should be handled with care. Pure Chysocolla is too soft for the everyday wear and tear that occurs in jewelry, however when it forms in the presence of quartz, it becomes hard enough to fashion into a beautiful cabochon. It can also occur in druzy form, yielding am amazing natural Robin’s egg blue color.
Fun Facts
The name for Chrysocolla comes from the Greek words “Chysos”, meaning gold, and “Kolla” meaning glue. This is because they used the ore to solder gold. A metal smith named Theophrastus is the first person to be credited with using the material in 315 BC.
Not only does Chysocolla come from Pennsylvania, it also can be found in Israel, the republic of Congo, Chile, England, France, Arizona, Utah and New Mexico
As its color alludes, gemstone healers believe Chysocolla to have calming and cooling effects. It can be used to treat nervous disorders and bring a sense of peace. It also is applied in the treatment of fevers, infections, burns or cramps.

1 comment:

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