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Author Topic: Seven crystals for identification  (Read 377 times)

PerditaPickle

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Seven crystals for identification
« on: June 27, 2020, 10:42:27 am »
Hi all,

I've really got to get into the habit of promptly writing down what crystals I've just purchased, I currently have 7 which I'm not sure what they are and would appreciate any help!

Some notes that might help (assuming the photo comes out the orientation I'm expecting it to):-
~ The top one is mottled dark and lighter green
~ Third from top is more 'beige' than it appears to have come out in the picture
~ Middle one is pale yellow
~ Third from bottom with the stripes is blue in case that doesn't come out well in the pic
~ Last one is a kind of dark maroon with fine black lines

Thanks in advance!
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Aisling

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2020, 02:15:52 pm »
Hi all,

I've really got to get into the habit of promptly writing down what crystals I've just purchased, I currently have 7 which I'm not sure what they are and would appreciate any help!

Some notes that might help (assuming the photo comes out the orientation I'm expecting it to):-
~ The top one is mottled dark and lighter green
~ Third from top is more 'beige' than it appears to have come out in the picture
~ Middle one is pale yellow
~ Third from bottom with the stripes is blue in case that doesn't come out well in the pic
~ Last one is a kind of dark maroon with fine black lines

Thanks in advance!

I'm better at identifying stones in person, but I'll take a guess (or seven). 

1 - If the pale green has a pearly sheen then it's likely seraphinite.  If there's no sheen, possibly green mottled jasper.
2 -  Colored Moonstone based on the color and banding
3 - Hard to tell, possibly mookaite
4. - Possibly another moonstone or a cloudy quartz
5. - Blue agate
6. - Citrine
7. - Mahogony obsidian or jasper

I'm very confident about #6, fairly so about # 2 and 5, and less so for the rest. If you're able to get pictures in sunlight or bright white light, it might help bring out the colors and any patterns in the stones. 
Into the Grey Mists (Spiritual Blog)

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Aster Breo

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2020, 01:07:54 am »

As Aisling said, it's much better to ID stones in person. How heavy they are, how hard, what kind of luster, etc, are all important clues.

I agree with most of Aisling's IDs. I think #1 could also be moss agate. Hard to tell from the picture. I also think 2, 3, 4, and 7 could be jaspers. Jasper and agate are types of quartz and, therefore, are more common than most other rocks. So, statistically, it's a decent bet. This is another reason why it's so hard to definitely ID rocks from pics.

Note, too, that the line between jasper and agate is not always clear. (Lmk if you want more info on that. I just wrote an explanation for a friend.) Also, the blue agate might be dyed. Again, hard to tell.

Ultimately, though, it doesn't matter what they are. They're beautiful, and, if you like how they feel, that's all that matters.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk

[Edited to add quote, because either Aster didn't tap twice, or Tapatalk is being obnoxious again - SP]
« Last Edit: June 28, 2020, 02:49:11 am by SunflowerP »
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PerditaPickle

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2020, 08:14:32 am »
Thanks in advance!

Thanks, both, for your input - I might try and re-take the photo in better light (it hadn't looked too bad on my phone initially but by the time I uploaded it via my PC the colours were looking quite different).

I'm not familiar with the name mookaite, do you happen to know if this stone might also have another name?

Something named mahogany sounds like a thing I might have picked up.

I'd actually be really interested in your explanation of the differences/similarities between jasper and agate, Aster - no urgency, though, obviously so just when you've a chance.

Thanks again!   :D
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Cynthia

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2020, 12:44:30 pm »


Some notes that might help (assuming the photo comes out the orientation I'm expecting it to):-
~ The top one is mottled dark and lighter green


I think #1 may be Snowflake Obsidian.  It can sometimes be green
- Cynthia

Aisling

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2020, 01:47:13 pm »
I'm not familiar with the name mookaite, do you happen to know if this stone might also have another name?

I've heard it referred to as a variation of porcellanite or jasper and by the terms Australian jasper and radiolarite. Also with some variations on the spelling:  Mokaite, Mook, Mooka,  etc.
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But once you learn your answers, you can never unlearn them."
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Aster Breo

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2020, 01:36:54 am »
[Edited to add quote, because either Aster didn't tap twice, or Tapatalk is being obnoxious again - SP]

Oh, FFS!  I know there was a quote on my screen, because I trimmed the damned thing!

Sorry you had to fix that, Sunflower!  And thank you!!
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Aster Breo

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Re: Seven crystals for identification
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2020, 01:44:43 am »
I'd actually be really interested in your explanation of the differences/similarities between jasper and agate, Aster - no urgency, though, obviously so just when you've a chance.

Here ya go.  This was written as part of a discussion in which a friend sent me pics and asked me to ID the stones in a couple of pieces of jewelry she'd purchased.  We're also both beaders, which is why I reference jewelry and beading.  Hope it's helpful, or at least mildly interesting.

Technically, agate and jasper are both types of chalcedony, which is microcrystalline (aka cryptocrystalline) quartz. Geologically speaking, the difference between agate and jasper is diaphaneity -- whether it's transparent, translucent, or opaque. Generally, agate is translucent, jasper is opaque. However, my observation is that, in the bead and jewelry world, the distinction between agate and jasper is based more often on the pattern of the stone. I haven't seen anything written about this -- though I haven't actually looked for anything, either -- so this is purely my observations from my own interactions in each "world". I think that might stem from the size of the pieces that bead and jewelry people usually work with. You can't see the whole pattern. So, f'ex, you might have a small piece of agate that looks like jasper or chalcedony because you can only see that tiny bit.

Also, I think, in the jewelry world, "chalcedony" is usually used for microcrystalline quartz that's all one color. It often also appears to sort of glow, which is the effect of its translucence. (People who don't know better confuse blue chalcedony with blue moonstone a lot.)

Both agate and jasper, but moreso jasper, have lots of names based on colors and patterns (like ocean jasper and moss agate). Most, but not all, of those are more about marketing. Rock (geology) people use some of them, the ones that have been around long enough that they have become more or less standard, like picture jasper and moss agate, but seem to tend to use names based on the location where they're found. The point is that you can see the same kind of agate or jasper called different things depending on who's doing the labeling.

Anyway, the concentric banding is characteristic, but not definitive,* of agate, because of the process by which agate forms (which is different from jasper -- see the link below for more on that). You see the banding in those polished, and often dyed, slices they sell in rock and souvenir shops. The outside part of most geodes is agate, while the inside is usually a macrocrystalline quartz, like amethyst.

As you've probably figured out by now, the line between agate and jasper can be very difficult to determine. Chemically, they're very very similar. The distinction is in light transmission, which you often can't see in a small piece that's been set, so jewelry people usually rely on pattern. Which is not always reliable. There are exceptions to all of these "rules".

Basically, it's complicated, so there isn't always an easy answer.  My personal feeling is that it's a lot of fun to understand the backstory for a stone or piece of jewelry, but, if you like it, it doesn't matter what kind of stone it is.

* Depends on who you ask. There's some disagreement on whether banding must be present for it to be agate. Even some rock people apparently take that position. Banding definitely makes the ID easier.

https://rocktumbler.com/blog/what-is-agate-jasper-chalcedony/

Also see the Wikipedia pages on chalcedony, agate, and jasper, which are pretty good -- though I'm not a geologist (anymore), despite what my undergrad diploma says, and I didn't read them exhaustively. 
"The status is not quo."  ~ Dr. Horrible

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