Gemmologist’s corner - Lapis Lazuli

Gemmologist’s corner - Lapis Lazuli

19/03/2021     Jewellery & Gems

Lapis Lazuli, mined in one of the most inhospitable mountainous regions of Afghanistan for over 6000 years, meaning 'blue stone' in Latin is a deep blue semi - precious stone often with flecks of shimmery metallic pyrite. Evoking the deep blue of the night sky, strewn with stars lapis has enchanted civilization since ancient times. It was said be to the shrunken night sky by the ancient South Americans, prized by the Ancient Egyptians who used it as ornament as well as a pigment for eyeshadow! And Ground down as a pigment by Michelangelo who used it to paint the roof of the Cistine Chapel.


Being opaque it lends itself to inlay, beads and cabochon stones in jewellery, its signature bold, blue colour can make a striking accent as well as a feature stone. Best of all, lapis lazuli is quite affordable, even on a budget, you can own a piece of this beautiful rock.  The highest quality stones have a blue to purplish-blue hue and an even colour, bluer lapis tend to be in the lighter range, and stones with purple hues tend toward the darker range. We have a selection of Lapis items in our forthcoming sale:

 Lot 340 A PAIR OF OVAL LAPIS LAZULI EARRINGS, mounted in gold, clip on fittings. €200 – 300

Lot 376 A NOVELTY BROOCH, modelled as a turtle, the shell in Lapis Lazuli, the body in 18ct yellow gold. €1000 – 1500



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