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|The Gem Thread|
|Topic Started: Nov 12 2011, 11:40 PM (126 Views)|
|MINI||Nov 12 2011, 11:40 PM Post #1|
I thought it would be good to discuss some gems and their properties, especially ones that you might use in your games. D&D has a long history of employing gems as items of wealth and wonder as well as decorative items, jewels and even uses in magic items.
Typical treasure rewards in the 3.5 DMG show 1 gem to 4d10 gems at the highest encounter level as appropriate awards. The 2e treasure tables offer similar numbers of gems as lair treasures with 2d6 at the lowest encounter types instead of a single gem.
Edited by MINI, Nov 13 2011, 12:05 AM.
|MINI||Nov 13 2011, 12:02 AM Post #2|
Moonstone is a member of the Orthoclase Feldspar family and is considered to be a semi-precious gemstone. Fledspars are a group of related minerals that account for almost half of the Earths crust. Orthoclase is a species within the group and its composed primarily of potassium, aluminum, silicon and oxygen. While limited in nature, some good size stones are available. Moonstone owes its name to its almost magical shimmer that resembles moonshine, the bluish-white light seems to hover over the stone as it moves. This phenomena is called adularescence.
According to folklore Moonstone is made of crystallized moonbeams. It is linked to the moon by many cultures as reflected in its name. One old story says that if you hold a moonstone in your mouth under the light of a full moon you'll be able to see your future.
Birthstone for June (along with Alexandrite and Pearl)
Moonstone ranges from transparent to opaque and is naturally found in colors that span a range from colorless to white with adularescence in blue, white, or rainbow color. The more transparent and colorless the moonstone, the more valuable it is. Moonstone is occasionally found in green, orange, yellow to brown or gray to black.
Colorless to white with adularescence in blue, white, or rainbow color. Moonstone is occasionally found in green, orange, yellow to brown or gray to black.
Transparent to opaque.
Moonstone typically exhibits the phenomena of adularescence in which a bluish-white light seems to hover over the stone as it moves. This phenomena originates from the interior structure of the gemstone. Incoming light is refracted inside the stone and scattered, creating a unique play of light. A combination of orthoclase and albite arranged in layers causes the lovely sheen.
Moonstone also has been found to exhibit the phenomena of Chatoyancy (a striking three dimensional effect typically seen in tiger eye quartz) as well as Asterism, a pattern of reflected light that forms star patterns, typically seen in sapphire and rubies.
1 to 25 carats, cut stones up to 250 carats are known.
TYPICAL CUTTING STYLES:
Moonstone is classically cut into cabochons as an appropriate height of the stone is essential to display the desired light reflection.
POSSIBLE ENHANCEMENTS & TREATMENTS:
Moonstone is sometimes enhanced with the addition of a blue or black coating on the back of the stone to increase the adularescence. This coating can be scraped off or removed with solvents.
6 to 6Ĺ on the Mohs scale.
BEST USE OF THE GEMSTONE:
Moonstone is fairly soft and sensitive to pressure, it should only be used in pendants, earrings and hair decorations.
Moonstone is listed in the 3.5 DMG as 20-80 gp in value (average of 50). The 2e DMG also lists moonstone on a list that compromises 50 gp gems.
Edited by MINI, Nov 13 2011, 12:16 AM.
|MINI||Nov 16 2011, 11:03 PM Post #3|
Smoky (Smokey) Quartz is a very common, coarse-grained variety of the silica mineral Quartz that ranges in color from nearly black through smoky brown. No distinct boundary exists between smoky and colorless Quartz. Its abundance causes it to be worth considerably less than either Amethyst or Citrine. Heating bleaches the stone, the color sometimes passing through yellow. These yellow pieces are often sold as Citrine. Crystals of the mineral frequently contain inclusions of gas (carbon dioxide), liquid (often both water and liquid carbon dioxide), or solids (rutile). Smoky Quartz from Mount Cairngorm , Scotland , is known as cairngorm and is a favourite ornamental stone in Scotland , where it is worn in brooches with Highland costume. Its properties are those of other Quartz gemstones. Today, the vast majority of smoky quartz is mined in Brazil , but it is found in most of the major gemstone producing nations.
Smoky (Smokey) Quartz is a popular variety of Quartz, which is sometimes used for unusual faceted cuts. It has an unusual color for a gemstone and is easily recognized and is well known by the general public. Only a few other brown or black minerals are ever cut for gemstones such as the Smoky Quartz, the very rare black beryl or the brown corundum. Smoky Quartz is also popular as an ornamental stone and is carved into spheres, pyramids, obilisks, eggs, figurines and ornate statues.
Smoky quartz, a variety itself of quartz, has a few varieties of its own:
Cairngorm is a variety that comes from the Cairngorm Mountains in Scotland.
Morion is a very dark black opaque variety of Smoky Quartz.
Coon tail Quartz is a Smoky Quartz with an alternating black and gray banding.
The color of Smokey Quartz is variable from brown to black and sometimes smoky gray colored specimens are included as Smoky Quartz. The cause of the color of Smoky Quartz is in question but it is almost certainly related to the amount of exposure to radiation that the stone has undergone. Natural Smoky Quartz gemstones often occurre in granitic rocks which have a small but persistant amount of radioactivity. Most Smokey Quartz gemstones that make their way to rock shops and to some gem cutters have been artificially irradiated to produce a dark black color.
Natural Smoky Quartz comes from many sources around the world. A few of the more noteworthy locations include Brazil, the worlds largest supplier; Pikes Peak area of Colorado, USA, where it is associated with green Amazonite and the Swiss Alps, which has produced many tons of fine specimens.
Smoky Quartz is quite often sold in the trade as Smoky (Smokey) Topaz. 99% of the time a gemstone offered as Smoky Topaz is actually this variety of Quartz. Since Topaz is a separate mineral, this type of name can be confusing and should be clearly disclosed as to which gemstone is actually being presented, since Topaz also occurs in a brown color.
Smokey quartz is nature's stone of endurance. If you need a extra boost, carry a smokey quartz gemstone with you. It promotes:
*Personal pride and joy in living
*Creativity in business
*Opens the path for perception and learning
Smokey Quartz is a protection stone that cleanses and clears negative energy.
Smokey Quartz is a grounding stone that transmutes negative energies and facilitates your ability to get things done in the practical world. It enhances organizational skills and is good to have around in the workplace or home office.
Healing properties of Smokey Quartz
Smokey Quartz is connected with the sounds of the universe. It makes you more aware of sounds including telepathic sounds. Smokey Quartz helps relieve depression.
HARDNESS: Rates a 7 on the Mohs Hardness Scale.
GAMING: Smoky Quartz is listed in the 2e DMG as a Semi-Precious gem that ranges in the 50 gp value area. Items that are smoky quartz can be jewelery as well as other fun items such as eggs, statues and the like.
|MINI||Nov 23 2011, 12:47 PM Post #4|
Agate is the Mystical birthstone for September. Agate has been valued as a gemstone since the ancient days of Egypt, more than 3000 years ago. It is also the birth stone for the Zodiac sign of Gemini (see the birthstone list for other references to agate). Agate is the accepted gemstone for the 12th and 14th wedding anniversaries. It is considered a lucky gem that attracts favor and protects its wearer from harm. Agate is named for the Achates River (now called the Drillo) which was once a source.
A very small sample of some of the many agates which are found all over the world. A hard stone, usually within the range of 7-9 on the Mohs scale agates are found in all colors of the rainbow, although green and blue are quite rare. Clarity is translucent to opaque. All sizes are available and agates occur in pieces big enough for large carvings, tablets cabochons, beads and a wide assortment of shapes.
Agate is a variety of chalcedony formed from layers of quartz (SiO2) which usually show varicolored bands. It usually occurs as rounded nodules or veins. Natural colors are caused by various metallic elements.
Often tiny quartz crystals form within the stone and add to the beauty and uniqueness of individual stones. These crystals are called drusy (sometimes misspelled as druzy). Lapidaries often cut just the drusy from an agate and jewelers use these drusy cabochons as the main stone or as an accent stone in their jewelry designs.
Some named varieties are: moss agate, eye agate; and plume agate, which looks like it's filled with beautiful feather plumes (see more agate variety names).
Agate is a relatively inexpensive stone except for some varieties with unusual banded or scenic markings. In recent years, Montana agate has gained wide acceptance in jewelry and well cut stones with nicely defined patterns often exceed the price of some of the more well known gemstones. Plume agate is another that often brings high dollar.
Agate is found all over the world including: the Africa, Asia, Brazil, Egypt, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, Nepal, and the USA.
Agate Folklore, Legend, and Healing Properties:
Agate is believed to discern truth, accept circumstances, and is a powerful emotional healer. Legend says that Agate improves memory and concentration, increases stamina and encourages honesty. Agate is said to be particularly beneficial to people born under the sign of Gemini as it helps them to remain calm and focused
It is believed to prevent insomnia and insure pleasant dreams, to enhance personal courage and protect one against danger. Agate provides a calming influence, improves perception, concentration and helps to develop and increase one's analytical talents.
AGATE AND ENAMEL BOX
GAMING: Agate is listed in the 2e DMG as an ornamental gem that ranges in the 10gp value area. Items that are agate can be jewelery as well as other fun items such as eggs, statues, carvings tablets and the like. The Ornamental stone listing also is more detailed in that it lists Banded Agate in varying colors, Eye agate in varying colors, Moss Agate in varying colors and Tiger Eye Agate (rich golden brown with dark striping).
Agate could also be used as the medium for a low priced, larger art object such as a statue, box or tablet.
MOSS AGATE CRYSTAL BALL
TIGER EYE AGATE NECKLACE
Edited by MINI, Nov 23 2011, 01:00 PM.
|MINI||Dec 2 2011, 05:48 PM Post #5|
|Note: I've added a poll to this thread and will be adding more material soon.|
|MINI||Dec 2 2011, 09:03 PM Post #6|
Azurite is a soft, deep blue copper mineral produced by weathering of copper ore deposits. It is also known as Chessylite . he mineral has been known since ancient times, and was mentioned in Pliny the Elder's Natural History under the Greek name kuanos (κυανός: "deep blue," root of English cyan) and the Latin name caeruleum. The blue of azurite is exceptionally deep and clear, and for that reason the mineral has tended to be associated since antiquity with the deep blue color of low-humidity desert and winter skies.
Azurite specimens are typically massive to nodular, and are often stalactitic in form. Specimens tend to lighten in color over time due to weathering of the specimen surface into malachite. Azurite is soft, with a Mohs hardness of only 3.5 to 4. The specific gravity of azurite is 3.77 to 3.89. Azurite is destroyed by heat, losing carbon dioxide and water to form black, powdery copper(II) oxide. Characteristic of a carbonate, specimens effervesce upon treatment with hydrochloric acid.
Azurite was used as a blue pigment for centuries. Depending on the degree of fineness to which it was ground, and its basic content of copper carbonate, it gave a wide range of blues. As chemical analysis of paintings from the Middle Ages improves, azurite is being recognized as a major source of the blues used by medieval painters.
Azurite is used occasionally as beads and as jewelry, and also as an ornamental stone. However, its softness and tendency to lose its deep blue color as it weathers limit such uses. Heating destroys azurite easily, so all mounting of azurite specimens must be done at room temperature.
The intense color of azurite makes it a popular collector's stone. However, bright light, heat, and open air all tend to reduce the intensity of its color over time. To help preserve the deep blue color of a pristine azurite specimen, collectors should use a cool, dark, sealed storage environment similar to that of its original natural setting.
Azurite is unstable in open air with respect to malachite, and often is pseudomorphically replaced by malachite.
Azurite is an ornamental stone as listed in the 2e DMG. It has limited value pricing around 10 gp. Uses for gaming could include jewelry though I would limit this to more primitive cultures that hand craft jewelry or to underground races that live in cooler areas where the stone can exist in open air without transforming to malachite or discoloring. I could see this stone being used as a physical source of spirituality by underground races.
More uses would include environmental flavor with Malachite being seen in stalactites and stalagmites while adventuring in natural caverns or with the mineral decorating the landscape of a jermlaine or kobold lair.
|MINI||Dec 26 2011, 05:34 PM Post #7|
Stone's names: Bloodstone, Heliotrope
Color: Bloodstone is a green stone with red spots. It also occurs in shades of dark green with red, brown and multicolored spots. The iron minerals cause the deep red and brown colors.
Description: Bloodstone is dark-green variety of the silica mineral chalcedony that has nodules of bright-red jasper distributed throughout its mass. Polished sections therefore show red spots on a dark-green background, and from the resemblance of these to drops of blood it derives its name.
Its physical properties are those of quartz.
The name's origin: Bloodstone is a stone with red spots which resemble drops of blood, so it is received its name due to this similarity.
Heliotrope derives its name from Greek words meaning sun and turning.
Birthstone: Bloodstone along with aquamarine are traditional birthstones of Pisces (Fish): Feb. 19 - March 20.
Care and treatment: Protect bloodstone from scratches, sharp blows, harsh chemicals and extreme temperatures. The polish will be removed if you get this type of stone wet.
From the stone history: In the Middle Ages, bloodstone was attributed special powers as the spots were thought to be the blood of Jesus Christ. It was used in sculptures representing flagellation and martyrdom.
Shopping guide: Bloodstone is an inexpensive stone. It is often used for pendants and bead necklaces.
Healing ability: In ancient times, bloodstone was thought to be able to stop hemorrhages with the merest touch. Bloodstone relieves stomach and bowel pain. It strengthens blood purifying organs and improves blood circulation. Bloodstone has a positive influence on a bladder.
Mystical power: Bloodstone is used to help one become more knowledgeable in the ways of the world. Bloodstone is also believed to be a very magical stone.
Deposits: Bloodstone is found in Australia, Brazil, China, India, Kathiawar Peninsula and the USA (Wyoming).
Gaming: Bloodstone is a 50 gp semi precious stone. Its healing and magical properties cold be the basis for adventure ideas. Clerics and churches would seek bloodstone for its healing properties. One could also change the belief of its link to the blood of Jesus Christ to another deity in the game world's panthenon (probably to a deity with a healing sphere). Mages might also seek bloodstone for use in scrying. More primitive healers (such as kobold or goblin priests) might also have bloodstone incorporated in their treasure hoards or in use as part of magic items for healing or scrying (such as a rod of healing or gems in a healing belt).
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