Thursday, April 19, 2007


Chrysoprase is one of the rarest of the Chalcedony crystals. While this side of the Quartz family tends to be vast and plentiful (Chalcedony is another term for Agates), nickel included silica only occurs in small deposits around the world.

The exception to this are the significant deposits found in Australia. However, most of this material was not discovered until the 1960s. Before then, small amounts of this highly prized green crystal came from mines in Austria, the Urals of Russia and the region around the current Czech Republic.

Chrysoprase is formed by the weatherization of Serpentine stone. As the elements break down the Serpentine, nickel, silica and other iron oxides are dissolved out of the stone and collect in cracks, crevices and saprolite (a soft, rich clay) in the underlying environment. A tedious process that explains in part why this gemstone can be so rare.

The luscious greens the crystal exhibits has long made it popular as a decorative gem. Greeks and Romans carved numerous cameos and intaglios from Chrysoprase. Egyptians used it as a complementary stone to Lapis Lazuli. Frederick the Great of Prussia commissioned it for the adornment of buildings and cathedrals, including the Chapel of St. Wecelas in Prague. Jewelry designer Peter Carl Faberge was fond of using the crystal in some of his most elaborate creations.

Alexander the Great apparently carried one into battle, until it was lost during a campaign in India. The legend claims the Chrysoprase crystal was bitten off his saddle by a snake and lost in the river.

The bible's Book of Revelations mentions the twelve layers of the City of God, each layer is a crystal, Chrysoprase is the tenth layer. An 11th Century Byzantine manuscript lists stronger vision and relief from internal pain as the healing qualities for Chrysoprase.

All this popularity, and the scarcity of the resource made this a very expensive and much sought after gemstone. Until the 1960s, when the Australians discovered Chrysoprase. Some of the specimens from this continent are so translucent and perfectly colored, that its been mistaken for Imperial Jade and was given the nickname, Australian Jade.

Exceptional material is found in the Yerilla mines, which have just recently reopened. The majority of the Australian Chrysoprase comes from central Queensland. The Yerilla mines are in the West and substantial deposits are also mined in the Southern region. While Australia's vast supplies of the gemstone have helped to bring prices down world-wide, the mines are still careful not to flood the market and maintain some control over pricing.

Most modern mining practices are employed to expose veins of this crystal, but ultimately, Chrysoprase is mined by hand. Normally, thin layers of the saprolite clay are stripped away by bulldozers or other heavy equipment , then the gemstone itself is collected by hand.
Small amounts of Chrysoprase have also been found in Brazil and the US in California and Oregon.

This gem has had a major connection with spiritual places. From the decoration of churches to the foundation of the City of God. You may find it an important part of your own spiritual space, once you start working with this graceful crystal.

As a meditation tool, Chrysoprase can be used to retrieve buried knowledge from your subconscious. If you are struggling with a personal trauma, conflict or overwhelming problems, a soothing meditation with this gemstone may reveal the answers are within you already.

Use the stone to activate, open and energize your Heart Chakra. Chrysoprase can boost your stamina from the inside out. Giving you a strong, loving heart that promotes a healthier, happier physical body. If you suffered abuse as a child, use the stone to heal the unseen injuries that are still bleeding inside.

Do you make quick judgments, only to regret them later? Chrysoprase will ease those judgmental tendencies, helping you view the world from a more balanced perspective. Allowing you to be more accepting of humans, and yourself. Once you quit carrying around your judge's gavel, you may find your load lighter and your smile brighter.

Chrysoprase opens up the view into yourself. Gain insight into how you operate, learn to take control of the thought processes that often lead you astray.

As with most Agates, Chrysoprase is very effective at protective medicine. Ancestors carved talismans of a Bull onto a Chrysoprase and wore it as a shield against harmful intent. It was also said to prevent the wearer from becoming negative and lashing out in anger. The gem was used to protect sea travelers from disaster.

For business energies, Chrysoprase can help assure the most beneficial outcome, helps you adapt to changing environments and keeps business partners faithful to a mutual goal. Of course this same energy can aid in forging a successful relationship outside the office as well.

Connect with Mother Earth and your plant brothers and sisters using Chrysoprase. Honor and appreciate your Mother's fruitful gifts. Use a crystal in fertility medicine. Fertility is not just for propagation. Use it in your garden, to promote monetary, spiritual, physical or emotional growth, to begin new projects.

The oldest healing traditions for Chrysoprase are for improving eyesight and the treatment of internal organs such as the kidney, liver, heart and reproductive organs. Some use the crystal for a smoother labor and delivery. It has also been recommended for pain from gout and rheumatism. Chrysoprase may assist in the absorption of vitamin C and improve your flexibility and dexterity.

The cooling colors of the gemstone may reduce fever and improve the your immune system's response to disease. Chrysoprase is an excellent stone for children to carry. The fertile green energies promote healthy growth patterns, protects against harmful influences and physical injury, plus it imparts a graceful nature to its keeper.

If you are undergoing a long healing process, whether from physical illness or emotional injuries, Chrysoprase is an excellent companion stone to carry. This crystal acts as a guardian for those in recuperation, protecting you from setbacks and new complications.

Avoid leaving your Chrysoprase in the sun or exposing it to heat. Over exposure could cause the stone to turn completely white. One geology resource did say you could restore the color by wrapping the stone in a wet cloth, or burying it in damp soil. The loss of color comes from water evaporating out of the gemstone.

1 comment:

Jeanne said...

You may wish to use a different image for this looks too blue, where as most chrysoprase is a strong green color. Contact me if you need images. I also have images of gem silica, including high grade images. (the color on your chrysoprase looks closer to some gem silica than chrysoprase)