Turquoise
French: turquoise
December's Birthstone

Image created by M. Driessen, photo taken from: Cipriani and Borelli (1986).

Geologic Properties
Chemistry: CuAl6(PO4)4(OH)8· 4-5 H2O Specific Gravity: 2.31-2.84
Crystal System: Triclinic Streak: white to pale green
Luster: Waxy Hardness: 506
Cleavage/Fracture: Conchoidal Color: Sky Blue to Pale Green
Habit: Crystals rarely found, but usually found as compact, reniform, nodules, or stalagtitic. Environment of Origin: Forms as a secondary mineral in alterated disseminated hydrothermal replacement deposits.

Lore and Magik

Turquoise has been known by other names, such as Turkey Stone, Turkish Stone, Fayruz (Arabic), Thyites (Greek), Venus Stone, Horseman's Talisman. Turquoise is one of the oldest known talismanic and curative gems, prized by many cultures. Because of a changeable color, it was thought to predict the weather, indicate illness, and warn of poison. Turquoise could strengthen eyesight and even cure blindness. Attached as an amulet to the bridle of a horse (or mule or camel), it made the animal surefooted. Affixed to a gun or bow, it provided an accuracy of aim. It was believed to keep its wearer from injury or death if (s)he fell from a cliff.

The stone symbolized success and good fortune, and often was worn as a love charm. To tell the time, a turquoise was suspended by a string inside a glass, against which it would strike the hours. In the Native American cultures of the Navajo and the Pueblo, turquoise is a very sacred stone. The Navajos used ground turquoise and coral in paintings to summon rain for crops. The Pueblos placed turquoise under the kiva, or gathering house, when it was being constructed as an offering to deities. It was also an extremely common tool for shamans in their medicine pouches. Other southwestern tribes of North America used it in cemetaries and tombs to guard the dead. According to some legends, turquoise originates in the wet earth at the end of the rainbow.

Magikal Statistics
Energy: Receptive Planets: Venus, Neptune
Element: Earth Deities: Hathor, Budda, The Great Spirit
Associated Metal: Gold Powers: Protection, Courage, Money, Love, Friendship, Healing, Luck.

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