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December 2008: Picture Jasper

Picture Jasper

Jasper is a form of microcrystaline quartz. Its name comes from the Greek word, iaspis, which means “Spotted Stone.” Jasper comes in many colors and patterns, but is most often red, brown, or green. Jasper is what I refer to as a “First Cousin” to agate. Both semiprecious stones are microcrystaline quartz. The difference between them is the size and shape of the quartz microcrystals. Those in jasper are small, round grains of quartz crystal, which pack together tightly like bee-bees in a jar. Thus, jasper is usually opaque. Agate, on the other hand, has slightly larger fibrous quartz crystals, which results in it being translucent in most cases.

Many jaspers are actually metamorphic rocks. In cases like Picture Jasper, the colorful patterns result from other minerals that are present in the specimen. Picture Jasper primarily comes from Idaho and Oregon. It formed when mud rich with quartz oozed and dripped into pockets of gas formed by molten lava. The heat from the exposure turned the mud solid almost instantly. Therefore, Picture Jasper is actually petrified or silicified mud. Because of its interesting patterns, it has been used as a psychological tool: the researcher will ask a client who is "looking for an answer" to gaze into the stone and describe all the symbols he sees. The researcher then works with the client to form the symbols into some sort of answer. Picture jasper is said to help with the re-evaluation of life's issues. It is also believed to facilitate development and continuance of business pursuits and activities. It can also be used in meditation to encourage balance, as well as to help you to improve your self confidence and courage.

Mineral of the Month Archives

May 2007: Rainbow Fluorite

June 2007: Lake Superior Michipicoten Agate

July 2007: Labadorite

August 2007: Rain Flower Agate

Fall 2007: Malachite

December 2007: Nepheline Syenite

January 2008: Native Copper

February 2008: Amazonite

March 2008: Lake Superior Agate

April 2008: Shadow Agate

May 2008: Apohpylite

June 2008: Ocean Jasper

Summer 2008: Marra Mamba Tiger's Eye

September 2008: Mohawkite

October 2008: Mexican opal

November 2008: Prehnite

December 2008: Picture Jasper

January 2009: Sea Shell Jasper

February 2009: Polychrome Jasper

March 2009: Selenite Desert Rose

Spring 2009: Coyamito Agate

July 2009: Obsidian Needles

August 2009: Goethite

September 2009: Banded Iron Formation

Fall 2009: Fairburn Agate

March 2010: Fossilized Dinosaur Bone

April/May: 2010 Kentucky Agate

June 2010: Nantan Meteorite

July 2010: Mookaite Jasper

Aug/Sept 2010: Polyhedroid Agate

Fall 2010: Ammonite Fossil

September 2011: Petoskey Stones

Spring 2011: Petrfied Wood

Winter 2011: Argentina Condor Agate

January 2012: Mary Ellen Jasper

March 2012: Mexican Crazy Lace Agate

June 2012: Moqui Marbles

September 2012: Chlorastrolite Greenstone

March 2013: Jacobsville Sandstone

August 2013: Unakite

November 2013: Skip-an-Atom Agate

April 2014: Tiger's Eye

September 2014: Black Corundum

February 2015: Condor Agate

June 2015: Petoskey Stone

November 2015: Slag

June 2016: Lake Superior Copper Replacement Agates

March 2017: Chert

July 2017: Kona Dolomite

December 2017: Septarian Nodule

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Gitche Gumee Museum.
E21739 Brazel Street
Grand Marais, Michigan 49839


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