What is Malachite?
- Malachite is a secondary copper mineral, with a copper content of 60%.
- Malachite is a deep green stone that often displays beautiful linear and circular patterns.
How is Malachite formed?
- Malachite has a Monoclinic crystal system and a hardness of Mohs 3.5 - 4.
- Malachite is generally found in botryoidal masses, nodules and crusts, and occasionally druzy, individual crystals are rare.
- Malachite is found on the upper oxidised area of copper deposits and often occurs with the minerals Azurite and Chrysocolla.
Where is Malachite found around the planet?
- Malachite is found in areas of copper mining in a variety of locations around the world.
- Some of the finest comes from areas in Africa such as Zaire, Zambia, Namibia and Zimbabwe.
- Antique Malachite jewellery is often from the Ural Mountains in Russia
- Malachite can also be found in the UK (Cornwall), USA (Arizona), Chile and Australia.
What is the history and folklore of Malachite?
- Archaeological studies show that Malachite has been mined since 4000 BC, and this beautiful green stone has been loved throughout antiquity for it's stunning green patterns.
- The Egyptians revered the colour green as a symbol of new life and fertility, they believed there was a place called the 'fields of Malachite' that they would go to after death, a realm just like Earth but without the pain and suffering.
- Malachite was extensively mined here in the UK, at the Great Orme mines on the North West coast of Wales for thousands of years until 600 BC.
- This vibrant green crystal has been used in jewellery, amulets, veneers and even buildings such as the Malachite Room in St. Petersburg.
- In the ancient Mayan city Palenque there is a burial chamber called the tomb of the Red Queen, and her funerary mask is made of a wonderful Malachite mosaic.
How do I care for Malachite?
- Polished Malachite can be wiped over with a soft cloth.
- Malachite is a soft crystal and scratches easily.