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: Verdite Info

Verdite Gemstone Information

About Verdite - History and Introduction

Verdite is the trade name for a light to dark-green metamorphic rock, composed of fuchsite and clayey material. Verdite is considered to be a variety of fuchsite, which in turn, is a variety of muscovite. The green colour of verdite is due to traces of chromium.

Verdite was discovered in North Kaap River, South Africa in areas where gold was found. It has been used by South African natives for hundreds of years as an ornamental stone and for amulets. Since verdite lacks hardness, it is most often carved and used for inlay work.

Verdite
Verdite
Identifying Verdite Back to Top

Verdite can be identified by its distinctive green colour and Mohs hardness of approximately 3. The refractive index of verdite is also useful in identifying it among specimens of other green rock such as serpentine. Since verdite is a rock rather than a mineral, it does not have a definite chemical composition. This is also a distinguishing characteristic that can help to identify verdite from other gemstones.

Verdite; Origin and Gemstone Sources Back to Top

The most significant verdite deposits are found in Zimbabwe. Verdite is also found in the Transvaal region of South Africa.

Buying Verdite and Determining Verdite Gemstone Value Back to Top

Verdite Colour

Verdite can be yellowish-green, bluish-green or brownish. It often has spots or a swirled appearance. The green colour of verdite may appear bright or dull, depending on the chromium content.

Verdite Clarity and Lustre

Verdite has been known to exhibit inclusions of rutile, corundum (ruby and sapphire), diaspore, quartz and light-coloured tourmaline. It has a vitreous, silky or pearly lustre and is translucent to opaque.

Verdite Cut and Shape

Verdite is often cut into cabochons, beads and spheres. It is also tumbled and often used for inlay. Verdite is frequently carved into animal or human forms as works of African art. Verdite is rarely faceted.

Verdite Treatment

Verdite is not usually treated or enhanced in any way.

Verdite Gemmological Properties: Back to Top
Chemical Composition: K(Al,Cr)2[OH,F)2/AlSi3O10] (Fuchsite) aluminium silicate
Crystal Structure: Monoclinic
Colour: Green
Hardness: Approximately 3 on the Mohs scale
Refractive Index: 1.580
Density: 2.80 to 3.0
Cleavage: Perfect
Transparency: Translucent to opaque
Double Refraction or Birefringence: 0.036 to 0.043
Lustre: Vitreous, silky, pearly
Fluorescence: Usually none

Please refer to our Gemstone Glossary for details of gemmology-related terms.

Verdite: Related or Similar Gemstones Back to Top
Lepidolite Gemstone
Lepidolite

Verdite contains fuchsite, so it is closely related to both fuchsite and muscovite. As a member of the mica group, verdite is also related to lepidolite and biotite. Verdite is also associated with "buddstone"; a metamorphosed chert (silica-rich sedimentary rock) and boulder corundum (ruby and sapphire).

As a consequence of its green colour, verdite is sometimes mistaken for jade. In fact, sometimes verdite is traded as "African jade". However, jade has a higher Mohs hardness score of 6 to 7.

Verdite Gemstone Mythology, Metaphysical and Alternative Crystal Healing Powers Back to Top

Natives of Zimbabwe, known as the Shona believe in the ability of verdite to promote fertility. Verdite is also thought to impart power and wisdom. It is also associated with reliability, strength and honesty. In traditional Hindu belief systems, verdite is thought to benefit Anahata, (the heart chakra) which is associated with decision making, love, compassion and psychic healing. Physically, verdite is believed to benefit the skin, hands, the lungs, the endocrine system and the thymus gland. Verdite is not a traditional birthstone.

Disclaimer: Metaphysical and Alternative Crystal Healing Powers and Properties are not to be taken as confirmed advice. Traditional, Ceremonial and Mythological Gemstone Lore is collected from various resources and does not represent the sole opinion of SETT Co., Ltd. This information is not to replace the advice of your doctor. Should you have any medical conditions, please see a licensed medical practitioner. GemSelect does not guarantee any claims or statements of healing or astrological birthstone powers and cannot be held liable under any circumstances.
Verdite Gemstone and Jewellery Design Ideas Back to Top

Verdite is a little-known gemstone that is often carved into figurines, such as native African animals or sculptures that have human forms. Jewellery designs make use of verdite beads, cabochons, smooth spheres and tumbled verdite. Verdite jewellery tends to be tribal-style, mainly using beads or wire-wrapping techniques for bracelets, earrings and necklace pendants.

Note: Buy coloured gemstones by size and not by carat weight. Coloured stones vary in size-to-weight ratio. Some stones are larger and others are smaller than diamonds by weight in comparison.

Famous Verdite Gemstones Back to Top

Verdite is featured in the interior of the Bank of England and South Africa House in London.

The Anglican Church in Mpumalanga Province, South Africa, has a font made out of verdite.

Verdite Gemstone Jewellery Care and Cleaning Back to Top

How to clean your gemstonesVerdite is a soft gemstone, so it should be cared for in order to prevent damage. Since household dust contains quartz, which has a Mohs scale hardness of 7, simply wiping dust from a verdite gemstone could cause scratches. The best way to clean verdite gemstones is by using soapy water and a soft cloth. Be sure to rinse well to remove soapy residue. Do not expose verdite to household chemicals or excessive heat. As with most gemstones, ultrasonic cleaners and steamers are not recommended. Always remove any jewellery or gemstones before exercising, cleaning or engaging in harsh physical activities such as sports. Verdite can be easily scratched by harder substances, so it should be stored away from other gemstones. It is best to wrap gemstones in soft cloth or place them inside a fabric-lined jewellery box.

  • First Published: April-21-2014
  • Last Updated: June-17-2014
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    Reproduction (text or graphics) without the express written consent of GemSelect.com (SETT Company Ltd.) is strictly prohibited.
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Size and Weight

Gems are always measured in Millimeter (mm)

Dimensions are given as;
length x width x depth,
except for round stones which are;
diameter x depth

Select gems by size, not by weight!
Gem varieties vary in density, so carat weight is not a good indication of size

Note: 1ct = 0.2g

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