Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Gemstone of the Week: Neptunite

(Neptunite image found on gemdat.org)

As one might suspect from its name, Neptunite was named after the Roman god of the sea "Neptune."  The reason for its name is because it was found Aegirine which was named after the Scandinavian god of the sea "Aegir." Neptunite was first discovered in 1893, and may be black or deep red.  It tends  to be opaque or translucent and has a hardness of 5-6 and has a vitreous luster.  Neptunite may be found in: Russia; Tajikistan; Greenland; Australia; Brazil; Mongolia; Ireland; the Canadian provinces of: Labrador, Newfoundland, and Quebec; and the states of: Montana, California, New Mexico, and North Carolina.