Gems and Jewels: Agate
August 10, 2008 § 4 Comments
This information is here because one person who disagreed with me on the usefulness of websites told me what he would have liked to see on a website when he was purchasing an emerald ring. I decided that was a good enough reason to start this project.
In my gathering of information for my book (Gems and Jewels, Metals and Makings), I’ve collected information on a variety of stones from a variety of sources. The most common book I’ve used has been Gemstones Of the World by Walter Schumann. It’s a great book and I highly recommend it for anyone interested in gemstones. For those of you only needing occasional information, I hope you’ll find it here.
In this information I will bring together some lore associated with the stone, some history, and information on its uses for jewelry.
Agate is a form of chalcedony. Banded with vertically running microscopic quartz fibers, these layers, or bands, can have the same or different colors. Agate comes in all colors and ranges from opaque to transparent, appearing soft and waxy. Many pieces of agate these days are dyed, which is how agate retains its color and highlights for so long.
Hardness (Moh’s scale of hardness):
Agate is often used in rings, as pendants, and in making cameos.
Associations and History:
Once used by the Egyptians as a gemstone, today agate is not thought of as a gemstone. It is most often used, these days, as decorations, some jewelry (rings, pendants, cameos) and in industry because of its toughness and resistance to chemicals.
Agates are thought to foster love, abundance, luck, strength, security, courage, protection, balance, harmony, inspiration, and appreciation of nature.
Healing lore: Agates are associated with healing insomnia, teeth, gums, stomach problems, stamina.
Black/Banded Agate: Lore: This is a stone for grounding and centering the energies of the Root or Base Chakra. Use for self control, grounding, resilience, quiet power, grounding, invisibility, peace and anxiety. Black agate is considered a receiving stones and is used for calming, soothing, inward meditation and reflection. When used for Chakra healing and balancing, Black Agate represents the element earth, and is therefore related to our survival instincts, and to our sense of grounding and connection to our bodies and the physical plane. Ideally, when using black stones at the Root Chakra, they bring us health, prosperity, security, and dynamic presence.
Blue Lace: Lore: Helps to focus on the inner source of love within you that transforms and heals all wounds. Contains the qualities of flight, air, movement, and grace. Highly inspirational when working with the inner self. Works well with not only the Throat Chakra, but the Heart, Third Eye and Crown Chakra. Strengthens hereditary skeletal structure, outward manifested growths, Arthritis.
Botswana: Gray and waxy in appearance. Lore: Strongly recommended for firefighters, people who smoke, and for anyone who comes in regular contact with excessive amounts of heat or smoke. Helpful for anyone who wants to quit smoking. Beneficial to the circulatory system, the skin, and the brain. A pleasant side effect may be giddiness. Soothes depression.
Fire: Most often found in North America. Comes in shades of orange, brown, blue, or green. Lore: Strong connection to the energies of the earth.
Moss: Translucent, transparent agate containing inclusions of minerals that look like moss or foliage. Lore: Connects one to Nature. Improves ego and self-esteem, emotional balance and strengthens positive personality traits. Allows one to see all the beauty one’s eyes touch.
Plum (Purple) Agate: Agate is composed of microscopic crystals of Quartz laid down in colorful bands or ribbons. The appearance of agate is waxy and soft. Almost always translucent and occasionally transparent. Lore: Is the stone of meditation and spiritual transformation. This stone works on the upper Chakra. It assists in allowing trust with your own intuition and opens the spiritual flood gates to a realm of endless possibilities. It gives us the space to “be” our spiritual selves and clears the mind for extraordinary vision and insight. Agates are grounding stones. They help obtain a better physical/emotional balance. They work to raise consciousness. Builds self-confidence.
Red/Banded Agate: Lore: This is a stone for grounding and centering the energies of the Root or Base Chakra. The color for the Root Chakra is red or black and it is grounded with your power. When this Chakra is open, you feel in good health and connected with your physical body. It is used to ground your essence into your physical body. This Chakra gives you determination, grounds you and helps in survival in the physical realms. Red is a projecting stones which assists in destroy disease, strengthens conscious, courage, strength, physical energy, luck, and success. Red stones are used for protection, courage, energy. Help with blood, relieve anemia, stop bleeding, heal rashes and wounds.