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Andalusite

>> Group(s) : silicates
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Identified by Delametherie in 1798, it was named after a Spanish province, Andalusia, where it was found, near Almeria.
Chiastolite the variety, also known as "Stone Cross" is a variety of opaque white to gray andalusite, which comes in elongated prisms which, when cut perpendicular to the axis, show carbonaceous inclusions forming a cross.
Andalusite is polymorphic with kyanite and sillimanite, it has the same chemical composition but the shape of its crystals is different.

Exploited sites

It is found in schists, in gneisses in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Spain, the United States, Russia, Sri Lanka, Bolivia, Chile. The Chiastolite variety it is found in France (Brittany), Spain (Galicia), Algeria, South Australia, Bolivia, Chile, United States (California), Russia (Kola Peninsula) ...

See pictures of the mines / other pictures

Use in jewelry

The transparent variety is rare, and its cut is difficult because of its strong pleochroism, it is used for rings and pendants. According to the axis in which the cutter sizes it, it turns to have green or pink reflections.
The chiastolite is cut flat or cabochon but it is mostly a collection stone, which used to be worn as an amulet.

Daily care and precautions

Very fragile due to its cleavage, it is rarely used in jewelry. When it has liquid inclusions, it is very sensitive to heat.

Looking alike stones

alexandrite , iolite , tourmaline

Historical healing properties

This stone would be suitable for people looking for their balance between materialism and spirituality (Heart Chakra). It would also act on the root chakra, helping to push away the uncontrolled and frightening fears. It is suitable to all people who have occupations in service to others and who are in need of compassion.

Imitations and treatments

doublets, colored glass.

Chemical characteristics
Al2[SiO5]

aluminium silicate

Physical characteristics

Main color : yellow

Other colors : brown, grey, pink, red, green

yellow green to red brown. The dark green variety is called viridine

Color of streak : white

Luster : vitreous

Hardness : 7.5

Density : 3.05 to 3.20

Cleavage : good

Fracture : uneven

easy cleavage only in one direction

Optical properties

Transparency : transparent, translucent

chiastolite is an opaque variety

Refractive Index : 1.625 - 1.650

Double refraction : 0.007

Weak, two-axis negative

visible double refraction : no

Dispersion : 0.016 (0.009)

Pleochroism : variable

Number of colors : 3

Sometimes verystrong . yellow olive-green, brown-red rose

Absorption spectrum : 550 - 455 - 436

Fluorescence : weak

Yellow to green

Inclusions : observed striations of more sustained colors and small curved needles

Crystals

Thick prismatic crystals

cristaux

Crystal system : orthorhombic

Other informations

Astrological sign : Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio, Sagittarius

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Correspondance
astrological
  • Cancer Cancer
  • Virgo Virgo
  • Scorpio Scorpio
  • Sagittarius Sagittarius

It brings balance, peace to the Virgin. The reddish-brown variety is suitable for Capricorns to whom it brings energy and peace.