Pietersite Pietersite is the trade name for a (usually) dark blue-gray breccia aggregate made up mainly of hawk's eye and tiger's eye. It was discovered by Sid Pieters in 1962 in Namibia, and named in his honor. Pietersite colors include blues, rusty reds, golds and browns.
Pietersite belongs to a branch of the tigers eye family called riebeckite. Tiger's eye is what geologists refer to as a pseudomorph, one mineral that changes into another. Tiger's eye began its life as the mineral crocidolite, a form of asbestos. As quartz replaced the crocidolite it took on the shape of the fibrous mineral and that is what causes the chatoyancy in gemstones of this family. Unlike tigers eye, the surface of a pietersite looks rather chaotic, with streaks and colors in every direction. This is because during formation of the crystal, the materials that compose it were broken apart, swirled every which way, and then were reformed and cemented together by quartz. Stones and crystals that go through that process are referred to as brecciated.
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