Monday, June 7, 2010

Oolitic Jasper

Oolitic Jasper

Birthstone Month:
Jasper is associated with the birthstone month of January.

Jasper is associated with the zodiac signs of Aquarius and Leo.

Chemical Symbol:

Chemical Make-up:
Jasper is a microcrystalline variety of Quartz, and a member of the Chalcedony family. It often contains organic material and iron oxides that account for its interesting patterns, bands, and colors.

History & Lore:
The name Jasper means “spotted stone”, and is ultimately derived from the Persian word 'yashp'.

Jasper was a favorite gemstone of ancient times and can be traced back to Greek, Hebrew, Persian, Latin, and Assyrian literature.

Jasper is a protective stone and is said to align the chakras and balance the yin & yang energies. In legend, Jasper was believed to protect against evil spirits and forces, and was also believed to bring courage and relief from pain. Additionally, it is also said that Jasper has the ability to protect against venomous snake and spider bites.

Oolitic Jasper is generally readily available at affordable prices.

Jasper can be found worldwide.

Jasper is rated at 6.5 to 7 on the Moh's Scale of Hardness and should be protected from scratches and sharp blows. Oolitic Jasper is an opaque, impure variety of Chalcedony that is black in color with an array of multi-colored spots, much like Leopard Jasper.

The value of Oolitic Jaspers can be determined by the saturation and richness of the color, the beauty of the exhibited multi-colored spots, and the design in which it is formed.

Common Cuts:
Jasper has been used for sculptures, bowls, vases, seals, and other such ornamentation purposes dating back thousands of years. As a gemstone, Oolitic Jasper is most commonly found cut into cabochons and beads.

Routine Enhancements:
Oolitic Jasper is not known to be enhanced.

Care & Cleaning:
Jaspers are often sealed with petroleum products therefore they should not be cleaned with water because it can remove the coating / polish. It is best to clean your Jasper jewelry with a soft dry cloth. As with most gemstones, Jaspers should be kept away from exposure to extremes of heat and household chemicals that can damage the stone. Always keep your Jasper jewelry in a fabric-lined box away from other jewelry items so as to avoid scratching.


  1. Another name for Oolitic is Orbicular. Both terms refer to jaspers whose appearance is characterized by small spheres of inorganic origin (distinguishing them from coral, crinoid, and other fossil stones filled with the mineralized remains of round sea creatures). The best known is Ocean Jasper from the northwest coast of Madagascar. However, Poppy Jasper, Leopardskin, and other types of orbicular jasper are also popular. A new oolitic jasper has been found in Indonesia; the ooliths are quite tiny. Oolitic jaspers look as if they are filled with bubbles or tiny spheres--the more bubbles and patterns, the more desirable.

  2. Recently, dyed ocean jasper, aka "sea jasper" (not to be confused with "sea sediment jasper," a very different stone) or "sea agate" has been appearing on the Internet. Inconspicuous or poor quality ocean jasper is being dyed in the same colors used for other stones: grass green, bright blue, sunny yellow, hot pink, bright violet, and "peachblow," a kind of orangy pink. Although ocean jasper comes in an amazing combination of colors, the only color that might confuse a buyer is the green, since ocean jasper is found in that shade of green. A monochromatic ocean jasper is almost nonexistent in finished stones, since the contrast of orbs against a different colored background is the beauty of ocean jasper. Since the mine was closed in 2006, escalating prices, stone have been dyed to increase the supply of saleable material.