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Properties Of Ornamental Stone Lapis Lazuli
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In ancient times the semi precious stone Lapis Lazuli was thought to be of the sapphire family. This stone was also considered very special in a few ancient countries like China, Egypt, Greece, Rome and Mesopotamia among many others. Interestingly, there is enough evidence that states that the relationship between man and Lapis Lazuli dates back to 6500 years. The present name Lapis Lazuli is said to have derived from Latin in which the word Lapis stands for stone and Azul stands for all shades of blue.
The quality that sets this stone apart from others is its pure colour. The rich and deep blue colour is free of any kind of white calcite veining and pyrite i.e. golden flecks. Gem experts and enthusiasts have always appreciated its midnight blue colour. This is because the presence of calcite changes the colour of the stone to a mottled blue and specks of pyrite interfere and spoil the overall texture of the ornamental stone. It has been believed that this stone is an amalgamation of purity with spirituality. In fact, ancient Egyptians have also ground the stone into a powder that was added to cosmetics. Also, painters during the Renaissance movement used this gemstone to make a unique ultramarine blue shade, which was said to be a very expensive pigment noted for its brightness and long-last colour. These days the stone is still used to renovate and restore paintings of historic importance.
Lapis Lazuli stone is excessively used on men’s jewellery. These stones are usually used as beads, cabochons, inlays and tablets in order to exhibit its prominent blue colour. These stones are also sold as cabochons, signet stones, carvings or as a part of a necklace. Along with jewellery, the stone is regularly carved into bowls, board games, combs dagger handles, amulets and such items for collectors.
Afghanistan is said to be the best known source for Lapis Lazuli of finest quality. Burma, Chile, Pakistan and Russia are also known to produce lighter blue-coloured stones that are obviously a less valuable variety. Selling prices of these stones vary depending on colour, craftsmanship and overall quality.
Genuine collectors should identify this stone from imitations. It is believed that the stone has been imitated by ancient Egyptians centuries ago. A Lapis imitation was coloured by copper sulphate. Glass, plastic and sodalite are the other materials used on inexpensive Lapis imitations.
Tips to buy and maintain a Lapis Lazuli:
Examine the stone’s colour and texture using different light sources
Never put Lapis Lazuli in ultrasonic cleaners or jewellery cleaning fluids
Lapis Lazuli cannot be steam cleaned
This article has been written and posted by an astrologer working at Gempundit.com that offer to buy semi precious stones and also provides free of cost consultancy and advise on blue Sapphire Stone and gives the more information on gemstones.
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