Friday, 10 June 2011

Chrysoprase ~

Chrysoprase (usually pronounced 'cry-so-phase') is relatively scarce in gem shops and people don't necessarily know what it is. 

In one antique shop I visited an aventurine necklace was ticketed as chrysoprase, and when I pointed out the mistake the attendant responded that it would probably be the same price anyway - which showed that she didn't know all that much about gems, as chrysoprase is considerably more costly!  Looking at the pebble below I can see that at the casual glance it could seem like aventurine, but the shade of green in the pebble shown here has a more bluish cast.

In the image below the stone looks so blue that it looks a bit like turquoise, but those with a practised eye would not confuse the two: it is considerably heavier, harder and takes a higher polish; also it's usually more of an apple green. 

The sliver below shows the typical colour well.  It's good quality specimen: when held against the light it has a high degree of translucence. 

Another specimen, more opaque:

This one is completely opaque.  It has a lemony cast to it:

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