Crystals | A History
Crystals have been prized for thousands of years for their beauty and healing properties.
The first historical references come from the Ancient Sumerians, who included crystals in magic formulas. The Ancient Egyptians used semi precious stones in their jewellery and carved grave amulets of the same gems primarily for protection and health. They used what they called Chrysolite, known now as topaz and peridot to combat night terrors and purge evil spirits. The Ancient Greeks attributed a number of properties to crystals and many names we use today are of Greek origin. The word 'crystal' comes from the Greek word for ice, as it was believed clear quartz was water that had been frozen so deeply it would remain a solid. The name Hematite comes from accent Greek word for blood, because of the red colouration produced when it oxidises. Hematite is an iron ore and the ancient Greeks associated iron with Aries, the god of war. Greek soldiers would rub hematite over their bodies to aid them in battle and protect them from their enemies. One of the most traditional precious stones with a history going back to ancient Greece is amethyst. Amethyst was reclassified as semi-precious after large deposits were found in Brazil and Uruguay in the first half of the nineteenth century. The introduction of the term semi-precious into the English lexicon corresponds with the new amethyst discoveries.
Jade was highly valued in ancient China as they believed that since jade objects lasted so long, they were linked to immortality. They believe jade to also bring good luck, purity, and enhanced intelligence. Jade remains significant to this day and was embedded into the olympic medals from the 2008 games in Beijing. Chinese emperors were sometimes buried in jade armour and in Mexico around the same time period there have been found burials with jade masks. More recently (250 years ago) the Maoris of New Zealand wore jade pendants representing the ancestral spirits, which were passed down the generations through the male line. The tradition of green stones being lucky continues in parts of New Zealand to this day.
This is a very brief history but it gives us a little insight into the significance of crystals and semi precious stones and their use throughout human existence in many forms including that of healing and protecting. In more recent times crystals have been used in healing therapies with outstanding effects. Their metaphysical structure vibrates and resonates with our subconscious self.