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Soothing Turquoise

Turquoise is one of the finest bluish-green or greenish-blue colors in the world. It has the soothing qualities of blue and the rejuvenating properties of green. A brilliant combination, in my humble opinion.



It is also the name of one of the most popular gemstones on the planet. The name turquoise is really the French word for “Turkish,” because the sky blue gems, centuries ago, came to Europe from Turkey. Turquoise isn't from Turkey though, it was mined for 3,000 years in modern-day Iran, formerly known as Persia.


Turquoise has been mined for more than 3,000 years. It is one of the first gemstones ever mined, with sources saying that mining turquoise dates back to 6000 BC. Perhaps in the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt.


As a result of these mines in Egypt, turquoise was used in jewelry and Ancient Egyptians buried fine turquoise jewelry with the mummies.



Turquoise is a cryptocrystalline (microscopic crystals that form a solid mass) aggregate composed of hydrated copper and aluminum phosphate. The beloved blue component of turquoise comes from the copper component, while iron contributes to turquoise’s more greenish hues. The green turquoise can be found in Tibet while the blue turquoise can be found in Iran.


This gorgeous aggregate is found in very few places in the world and they're usually dry and barren regions and acidic, copper-rich water seeps into the ground and reacts to the phosphorus and aluminum in the soil. The soil is usually sandstone (tan in color) and limonite (usually dark brown). Tan or dark brown markings in turquoise is called matrix and depending on how the turquoise was formed in the earth, you could get a spider web matrix where there is a uniform arrangement.



One of the most plentiful sources of turquoise is in the United States. They include VA, which provides distinct specimens, California, NM, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, and Colorado are turquoise sources. Virginia provides distinguished specimens and AZ holds the majority of commercial mines.

 


In Globe, AZ, there is mine named the Sleeping Beauty mine, which is known as one of the world’s top producers of turquoise. It's probably the largest mine in the United States. Owning turquoise from anywhere in the states marks the occasion of owning a product made in America.



Native Americans are well-known for creating beautiful turquoise and silver jewelry, which is believed to defend the wearer from demons. Turquoise was also believed to improve hunting prowess, according to the Apache warriors and the Navajo believed that turquoise was pieces that fell from the sky. We can all agree that makes sense and the ability to protect and sharpen hunting skills sounds like excellent qualities for turquoise.


If you decide to treat yourself to a piece of turquoise jewelry, be cautious when you wear turquoise because it is a porous material. The material usually requires treatment of being impregnated with either resin or wax. This treatment is effective against cracking and fading. But we do recommend focusing on earrings and necklaces for your turquoise jewelry.



We're glad you took the time to stop by Moijey and check out our blog. This will be our last post until 2017. We wish all you lovely readers a safe and happy New Year and a wonderful 2018.