Have you ever received a piece of jewelry set with a clear, shimmering stone and wondered about its significance? If you were born in April, there’s a good chance that stone is quartz, the beloved birthstone for this month.
Quartz is what we might consider as an alternative birthstone for April. Often, when a traditional birthstone is difficult to source or very expensive (ahem Alexandrite), then alternatives are created. In this case, Quartz has been chosen probably because of its clear colour, similar to April’s other birthstone: diamond.
But clear quartz is more than just a pretty gemstone – it has a fascinating history and cultural significance that spans centuries and continents. In this article, we’ll explore the origins of quartz and its spiritual and healing properties, as well as take a look at the many unique varieties of this stone. We’ll delve into legends and mythology surrounding quartz, its physical properties, and its role in jewelry design and pop culture. I hope by the end of this piece, you’ll have a new appreciation for this stunning and multifaceted crystal that can hold its own – even against the all-mighty diamond.
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Quartz Birthstone History
Quartz has been used to adorn decorative objects for thousands of years, with ancient civilizations incorporating this gemstone into daily life. The Greeks called it “krystallos,” meaning “ice,” because they believed it was so cold that it could never thaw.
Throughout history, quartz has been used for everything from amulets and talismans to facial masks and ceremonial objects.
In ancient Egypt, for example, quartz was believed to have healing powers and was used in rituals to keep the dead from decaying. In medieval Europe, quartz was thought to protect against the plague and other diseases.
In modern times, quartz has retained its spiritual and healing properties. Some people believe that it can improve mental clarity and provide spiritual guidance. Others use it for its physical healing properties, such as easing pain and reducing inflammation. Quartz is also a popular stone for meditation and energy healing practices.
Quartz Birthstone Meaning
Quartz resonates with the individual needs of the wearer.
It has the innate ability to focus, amplify, store and transform any energies channeled through it – holding the energy long enough to help in the manifestation of a chosen goal.
It brings a sense of purpose and clarity – filtering out distractions that may divert the wearer from their chosen path.
Quartz birthstone Properties
Quartz is a mineral composed of silicon and oxygen. It’s one of the most abundant minerals on Earth, and can be found in a variety of colors and formations – from sunny yellow citrine points to purple amethyst clusters. With a Mohs hardness of 7-7.5, it’s also durable enough for most jewelry applications.
Clear quartz, also known as rock crystal, is the most common variety and is prized for its clarity and brilliance.
Quartz crystals have a unique ability to convert electrical energy into mechanical energy, and vice versa. This property, known as piezoelectricity, makes quartz an important component in modern electronics and timekeeping devices such as quartz watches.
These watches work because the quartz crystals are able to absorb and direct energy. If you apply an electric charge to a piece of quartz, it vibrates at a precise frequency (oscillating exactly 32,768 times each second).
It’s so precise that you can keep time by it. By counting the vibrations, a circuit within the watch can send out a regular pulse, causing the hands to tick or the LCD dial to change with immaculate accuracy.
Talk about powerful crystal energy!!
Quartz birthstone Care
Quartz’s durability and affordability make it a practical choice for your jewelry collection. While not as long-wearing as some of the more precious gemstones, like diamond or sapphire, with a little extra care, quartz can last a long time.
Make sure you take off any quartz rings when you’re doing anything rough with your hands (gardening/sports), or coming into contact with chemicals (cleaning solutions). I also recommend removing all jewelry when swimming or at the spa.
Quartz is quite easy to clean. Soaking in a bit of warm, soapy water before brushing with a clean, soft bristled brush, is all that’s needed to keep your quartz stones sparkling and beautiful.
Avoid using ultrasonic or steam cleaners, as these can damage your stones.
Store your quartz jewelry in a soft pouch or lined box taking care not to let it rub against other gemstones.