Andalusite was given its name by Jean-Claude Delamétherie in 1798 for Andalusia, Spain where it was first discovered. However, the the original form of andalusite was first found before the birth of Christ in El Cardoso, which is a different Spanish region. Andalusite is also known as the "poor man's Alexandrite." Cross stone is one of the alternate names of Andalusite. According to Greek tradition, andalusite is a form of Chiastolite. The ancient Greeks used these extravagant crystals for healing and decorative purposes.
Andalusite Metaphysical Properties
Andalusite is the seeing stone that promotes the desire for self-realization, helping one to rebalance and re-align. This stone helps the wearer in discovering problems and emotional blockages while pointing the wearer to the possible resolution. It is also a protection stone and used to ward off the evil eye. The stone is believed to regulate sleep and helps in alleviating the paralysis of nerves, muscles and joints. Wearing andalusite crystals is believed to help reduce fevers, the pain of arthritis, joint inflammation, gout and rheumatism. Andalusite is associated with the astrological sign of Virgo and vibrates to the number seven. It works well for the solar plexus chakra.
Andalusite Geological Properties
Andalusite is an aluminum silicate mineral that can be found in low-pressure metamorphic rocks where it crystalizes, forming prismatic crystals or massive columns. It is a polymorph or aluminum silicate, which consists of two other minerals: kyanite and sillimanite. The crystals of andalusite are often cut into gems when they show red or green hues, which resemble a form of radiance. This well-known ability to change colors when viewed from different directions is a result of pleochromism. Pleochroism is an optical phenomenon of exhibiting different colors when observed at different angles, especially with polarized light.Andalusite is commonly found in Australia, Brazil, China, France, Russia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden and the USA.
Pink to red brown, occasionally yellow, green, white, gray rarely violet
6-1/2 to 7-1/2 (Mohs)
3.13 - 3.21
1.627 - 1.650
Proper Care of Andalusite
Although resistant to scratching, due to its hardness, andalusite is slightly brittle, so jewelry made from andalusite, such as rings, should be protected from sharp blows. Andalusite can be safely cleaned with lukewarm water and a mild soap. Wipe the surface with a soft cloth. Avoid chemicals such as household bleach. Use with ultrasonic cleaners is acceptable.
To learn more about andalusite and other gemstones, order your copy of Walter Schumann's revised and expanded edition of Gemstones of the World.
Designing with Andalusite
Andalusite works great as an accent stone, especially in jewelry designs using clusters of brightly colored gemstones such as carnelian, lapis lazuli and peridot for a stunning effect. Andalusite is ideal as a center stone for unisex designs including pendants, rings, bracelets, necklaces, brooches, cuff links and tie tacs. Because of its shifting colors--pleochroism--it works best in jewelry designs that permit light to strike the andalusite components at different angles.
**Please note that all metaphysical or healing properties listed are collected from various sources. This information is offered as a service and not meant to treat medical conditions. Fire Mountain Gems and Beads® does not guarantee the validity of any of these statements.
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