Discovered only a few years ago, the Greek gemstone explorer Yianni Melas – a kind of modern Indiana Jones – aquaprase was compared to the Aegean Sea seen from the sky.
Melas first encountered this stone in Africa in a location known for its opal deposits, seeing it in the tent of a mining friend. In fact, this stone has been ignored for years by explorers, being considered an inferior variety of opal or a discolored chalcedony.
“I took a crystal and cut it in two, so that both halves are like a mirror image. The details of one half match the details of the other. It is very suitable for making earrings. These iridescences add to the beauty of the jewelry. People immediately realize that this material is natural because each piece is unique and unprecedented. ”
Incorporating the colors of the sky, sea and earth, aquaprase was named after combining the word “aqua” – for its blue and “prasinos” which means “green” in Greek.
After the first expertise, some gemologists classified the stone as chrysoprase (a variety of chalcedony), others said it was a blue-green opal, but Melas was convinced that he had discovered something special and sent the stone to the GIA gemological institute.
“I haven’t received an answer in a few months. Then I got a call: I had discovered something incredible. It wasn’t chrysoprase. It wasn’t opal either. It was a variety of chalcedony that had never been discovered before. “
The GIA established following laboratory investigations that this bluish-green chalcedony has a unique color due to the traces of chromium and nickel in the structure. Other varieties of chalcedony appear green-yellow and blue-green.
Jewelers and lovers of precious stones are attracted by the terrestrial quality of aquaprase. Each piece is unique, with oxide inclusions sometimes taking on the appearance of white clouds floating over lost islands off the ocean.
Years ago, jewelers used to paint these precious stones to give them a perfectly uniform hue. But modern gem lovers appreciate their uniqueness, the so-called flaws, highlighting these little worlds captured in a stone.
Aquaprase combines the fluid energy of the ocean with the golden roughness of the sand, so it is the gem of those who want to embark on a courageous and important journey in life, helping them to see things in a broader perspective. It is the stone of explorers, sailors and those who cross the seas and oceans.