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>> Group(s) : silicates
See the pictures :

It has long been confused with emerald with whom shares the same color, but it was identified in 1801 as a specific species by René Just Haüy.
Its name comes from the Greek, recalls that its cleavage planes are visible through the crystal, which was observed by Haüy.

Exploited sites

The first dioptases arrived in the west from the Kyrgyz steppes.
It is a mineral widely spread where there are copper deposits but rarely found in large well-formed crystals: Democratic Republic of Congo, Zaire (Katanga) above, Namibia (Tsumeb), Chile, USA, Peru, South West Africa, Russia ...

See pictures of the mines / other pictures

Use in jewelry

It is rarely cut into cabochons or faceted but kept rough and protected in a frame of gold or precious metal.

Daily care and precautions

Sensitive to shocks and household products, to wash very quickly, only with soapy water, and rinse with clean water and dry immediately.

Looking alike stones

diopside , emerald , grossular , uvarovite , tourmaline , vesuvianite

Historical healing properties

It would release the emotional knots and help regain sensitivity, therefore suitable for disillusioned people, wounded in pride that love pains made insensitive, hardened. Since ancient times it was confused with the emerald for its color, the same it was called “ medicinal emerald “ because its copper content made it possible to prepare ointments that would have fungicidal properties ... it is even awarded an invigorating action on the heart energy. Helping to solve some problems, it is seen as bringing joy and well-being.

Chemical characteristics

copper cyclosilicate mineral

Physical characteristics

Main color : green

also bluish green

Color of streak : green

Luster : vitreous

Hardness : 5.0

Density : 3.30 to 3.35

Cleavage : perfect

Fracture : uneven

Optical properties

Transparency : transparent, translucent

Refractive Index : 1.645 - 1.710

Double refraction : 0.051

Definite uniaxial positive

visible double refraction : no

Dispersion : 0.035 (0.020)

Pleochroism : weak

Number of colors : 2

Dark green, light green

Absorption spectrum : 550 - 465

dioptase spectrum system

dioptase spectrum system

Fluorescence : none


Short prisms, fragile, sometimes twinned, colorful


Crystal system : trigonal

Other informations

Astrological sign : Leo, Capricorn, Pisces

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  • Leo Leo
  • Capricorn Capricorn
  • Pisces Pisces

brings quietness