Agate Geode Gemstone Information
About Agate Geodes - History and Introduction
On the outside, agate geodes appear to be nothing but rock, but looking deeper into the interior of a geode will reveal amazing crystal growth and formations. Agate geode crystals are usually composed of quartz or chalcedonic deposits, but various other minerals such as calcite, celestite and dolomite are also commonly found within other varieties of geodes.
Identifying Agate Geode Back to Top
Identifying geodes requires a great amount of skill. Untrained eyes will struggle to identify geodes because of their plain appearance. Skilled miners focus on the outcrops of rock and look specifically in environments where geodes are most likely to develop. Miners will look for any egg-shaped stones or unusual stones with cauliflower-like formations.
Agate Geode Origin and Gemstone Sources Back to Top
The term 'geode' originated from a Greek term meaning 'shape of the earth'. The name was likely given because of their natural, round earth-like formations, although most occur in oblong or egg-like shapes. Geodes can be found all around the world, but they are mostly located in deserts and volcanic regions. Geodes are especially abundant throughout America including California, Illinois, Nevada, Arizona, Missouri, Kentucky, Utah and Iowa.
The crystal production that develops within a geode depends on several variables including the amount of moisture trapped within the geode, the various chemicals and rich minerals deposited, and the amount of pressure applied to the geode. If the balance of these variables is just right, crystal formations will begin to grow within the walls of the shell. The crystals build and grow inward towards the center, slowly filling the geode out. The entire process takes millions of years. Many geode specimens have been estimated to be over 250 million years old. Surprisingly, the majority of agate geode specimens are never completely filled out. Geodes with filled out crystal formations are referred to as nodules; nodules composed of agate are referred to as 'thundereggs'.
Buying Agate Geode and Determining its Gemstone Value Back to Top
Geode prices vary greatly in the gem market. Some smaller geodes may fetch as little as one to two dollars, while larger specimens have been known to command several thousand dollars or more. Geode prices depend entirely on the crystal growth, size and weight.
Agate Geode Gemological Properties: Back to Top
Agate Geode Gemstone Varieties or other Similar Gemstones: Back to Top
Agate geodes can occur in a wide variety of colors and patterns. Most trade names or varieties are simply names that refer to the locality or region that the geode was formed. Other varieties of geodes are sometimes named after the crystal growth itself. Other popular geodes, include citrine geodes and amethyst geodes. In many cases, geodes are confused with drusy gemstones.
Most Popular Similar or Related Gemstone Varieties and Trade Names:
Amethyst geode, citrine geode, azurite drusy, rainbow pyrite drusy, thunderegg, Bristol diamonds, quartz geode, chalcedony geode, jasper geode, limonite geode and calcite geode are among the most common varieties of geodes and drusys.
Lesser Known Similar or Related Gemstone Varieties and Trade Names:
Uvarovite garnet drusy, hemimorphite drusy, dolomite geode, celestite geode, pyrite geode, kaolinite geode, sphalerite geode, millerite geode, barite geode coconut geode and smithsonite geode are among the lesser known geode and drusy trade names.
Agate Geode Gemstone Mythology, Metaphysical and Alternative Crystal Healing Powers Back to Top
Agate geodes carry the same healing powers as all other agate crystals. In addition, most geodes contain other minerals, thus carrying the powers of all minerals contained within.
Agate Geode Gemstone and Jewelry Design Ideas Back to Top
Agate geodes are unusual in shape, so most are sliced when used in jewelry designs. Agate geodes are very popular for gemstone jewelry, carvings, cameos, beads and cabochons. Geodes make excellent ornamental gems and are most ideal for pendants, pins, brooches or earrings.
Note: Buy colored gemstones by size and not by carat weight. Colored stones vary in size-to-weight ratio. Some stones are larger and others are smaller than diamonds by weight in comparison.
Agate Geode Gemstone and Jewelry Care and Cleaning Back to Top
Agate geodes should be cleaned using plain water and mild soap. Using a soft cloth may not be efficient when trying to clean crevices. A soft brush, such as a toothbrush,can be used to clean geodes but care should be taken to ensure not too much pressure is applied. Do not use any harsh chemicals or cleaners to clean geodes and rinse only with room temperature water. Geodes can also be soaked in water to help soften and remove hardened debris.
- First Published: June-17-2013
- Last Updated: April-25-2017
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