The Gemstone Chrysocolla
Chrysocolla is a gemstone with a beautiful sky blue to bluish-green color. Copper in its chemical structure is responsible for the bright attractive color. It is often multicolored with inclusions or veining of black and brown matrix material. Chrysocolla's lack of widespread gem use is due to its low hardness and lack of durability. It is sometimes coated or admixed with harder Quartz, and these harder, more solid forms are better fit for gemstone use.
Blue, Green, Multicolored
2 - 4
Chrysocolla gemstones may be solid in color, but are more often multicolored blue and green, with interesting color patterns or mottling. Brown and black specks are often also admixed. Due to its color similarity to Turquoise
, Chrysocolla can be used as a
cheaper substitute and is occasionally falsely labelled as Turquoise.
A gem variety of Chrysocolla known as Eilat Stone
is a greenish-blue mixture of Chrysocolla, Turquoise
and other copper minerals such as Malachite from the ancient copper mines north of Eilat, in the southern Israel. Much of the material sold as Eilat Stone is in fact not really from Eilat but originates in other localities and is falsely labelled.
Chrysocolla is used as a minor opaque gemstone as well as a collectors gemstone. It is cut into cabochon
s and beads and only occasionally into other gemstone cuts.
Treatments & Enhancements
Chrysocolla is natural and not treated or enhanced.
Chrysocolla is found worldwide, though significant sources include the Congo (Zaire), Israel, Australia, Peru, Chile, Mexico, and in the U.S. in Arizona.
and blue Chalcedony
are harder, and Variscite
is usually greener without any blue hue.
Chrysocolla in the Rough Photos