What is Kyanite?
- Kyanite is an aluminium silicate mineral.
- Kyanite is translucent to transparent and comes in many colours, blue, black, green, white, pink. grey and yellow.
- An unusual feature of Kyanite is that it displays two strengths, being harder across the axis that along it. Because of this Kyanite is also known as 'disthene' which means 'two strengths'.
- Kyanite is sometimes known as Cyanite, relating to the colour cyan.
- Due to the varying strengths of Kyanite it is particularly difficult to cut.
- Kyanite is used in the production of ceramics such as porcelain and in electronics in the form of abrasives and electrical insulators.
How is Kyanite formed?
- Kyanite has a triclinic crystal system and a Mohs scale of 4 - 7 depending on the direction of stress.
- Kyanite forms in gneisses and schists which occur due to regional metamorphism.
- Kyanite forms in flat blades which are often embedded in Quartz and can occur with Garnet and Mica.
Where is Kyanite found around the planet?
- Kyanite is an uncommon mineral and is found in Brazil, Mexico, USA, Switzerland, Kenya, South Africa, Myanmar and Russia.
What is the history and folklore of Kyanite?
- Kyanite is part of the Manhattan schist which formed when large landmasses came together to form the supercontinent Pangaea around 335 million years ago.
- Kyanite was given it's present name by the German mineralogist Abraham Werner in 1789 and it derives from the Greek word 'kuanos' or 'kyanos', which means 'deep blue'. Prior to this it was sometimes known as lamellar beryl or blue talc.
How do I care for Kyanite?
- Kyanite is a delicate crystal and splinters easily so handle and store with care.
- To clean, dust off with a very soft dry brush.