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Azurite and malachite, China; 2 3/4" Across

This piece is jewellery grade azurite with malachite. A piece of this quality could be cut into small cabochons. Azurite and malachite are both soft mineral species with a hardness of 3.5 - 4 on the Moh's hardness scale. Hence, they are only a little harder than marble (hardness of 3). Since stones used in jewellery need to resist scratching and wear, stones used in jewellery need a hardness of 7 or greater. Malachite is fashioned into carvings but azurite carvings are relatively rare since azurite suitable for carving is much rarer.

Matthew Webb Photo


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