Calcite meaning, properties


It is widespread yet very beautiful. From Egyptian pyramids to the necks of avid fashionistas, calcite is found everywhere. We have it in our catalog, too. Why do you need to get this mineral for your gem collection or DIY jewelry? Read further to find out.

Calcite meaning

The History and Meaning of Calcite

Calcite is the third mineral in terms of abundance in the earth's crust. The term calcite appeared in the 19th century and it comes from Latin calx meaning lime. At the same time, lime spar has been used for thousands of years. The world-known Egyptian Pyramids were made of this material. Besides that, the mineral was the building blocks of the Tower of Babel and the Parthenon.

Today there are many alternative names of calcite:

Stone flower or stone rose - the mineral is dubbed like this due to the similarity of its crystal formations with petals.

Paper spar - some crystals are so thin and transparent that they look just like paper.

Heavenly stone – the gem earned this nickname because of its color and brilliance.

Calcite isn’t particularly widespread in jewelry and arts and crafts. It is very fragile and soft so it comes as no surprise that people preferred harder minerals for amulets, religious attributes, utensils, etc. Many calcite handicrafts created by our ancestors have not survived to this day. Nevertheless, the importance of calcite cannot be underestimated. For example, the Great Barrier Reef is comprised of this ubiquitous mineral.

Calcite, Physical Properties

Physical Properties and Chemical Properties of Calcite

Calcite is a crystalline form of calcium carbonate, CaCO3. The crystals of the mineral emerge in multiple shapes: prismatic, lamellar (aka paper spar), rhombohedral, angel wings, butterfly wings, etc. The most widespread form of crystals is the scalenohedron. Such specimens are called dog-tooth spars.

Mineralogists describe more than 700 varieties of calcite. The most common ones are:

Antraconite is a black variety of calcite due to the inclusions of bitumen;

Argentinian Blue Calcite, better known by its trade name Lemurian Aquantine is distinguished by its opaque blue color and white matrix;

Iceland spar or Iceland crystal is a colorless and clear variety featuring a unique refractive index;

Simbircite (Volga amber) is a translucent mineral with a yellow and red color;

Marble onyx is decorative and ornamental variety featuring concentric zones of calcite;

Travertine is a white or creamy banded rock that occurs due to the evaporation of spring waters;

Pearls can also be called a variety of calcite since they are an amalgamation of calcium carbonate and the horny substance conchiolin.

Calcite cannot be called a gemstone because of its low hardness (3.0 on the Mohs scale) and perfect cleavage. i.e. the ability to split into symmetrical polyhedrons when struck or hit.

The stone can be opaque, translucent, and even transparent. Almost perfect clarity is characteristic of Iceland calcite. It was first found in Iceland, hence the name. The rhombohedrons of Iceland crystals have a curious optical phenomenon birefringence, i.e. double refraction. When you look through these crystals, the image doubles because a beam of light splits in two.

One more remarkable property of calcite is its reaction to acids. Even a drop of acid will make calcite fizzle and bubble. You can use this quality to distinguish calcite from similar minerals. It is not uncommon to confuse the stone with others due to the variety of its forms and colors.

In terms of colors, calcite is available as honey-yellow, lilac, green, pale pink, orange, brown, blue, crimson, black, grey, and completely colorless. These colors occur because calcium carbonate acquires the ions of iron, manganese, cobalt, nickel, and rare earth elements. For instance, cinnabar gives the mineral blood-red color, green and blue tones are the result of copper carbonate, and bitumen colors calcite black.

Black Calcite

Calcite Deposits

Calcite is mined all over the world. Alps and Cordillera are basically made of this mineral. Large (5-6-meter) aggregates of transparent crystals have been found in Iceland and later in many places around the globe. Some of the largest deposits of the mineral are located in the United States, Italy, Greece, Mexico, Russia, and other countries. Due to its ubiquity, calcite is very affordable.

Calcite benefits

Metaphysical Properties and Healing Properties of Calcite

If you want to reap as many benefits of calcite as possible, you should consider its color.

Pink calcite enhances the internal energy of a person. It acts as an antidepressant, treats mental disorders, and improves the quality of sleep. On top of that, it is able to help bring things to completion whether it is long-standing issues or new endeavors.

Blue calcite has a calming effect, it brings mental harmony, as well as allows getting rid of irritability and negative emotions. Amulets made of this mineral can be used to reduce high blood pressure and alleviate pain since they offer an analgesic effect. The blue mineral inspires to create something new. Therefore, it is beneficial to creative individuals.

Orange calcite restores and purifies energy. You can use it to eliminate your fears, phobias, obsessions, and depression. Its healing effect impacts the digestive and reproductive systems.

Yellow calcite allows you to understand yourself, reflect on important things, and clear your mind. For these reasons, the stone is indispensable for meditation. Apart from that, it has a positive effect on digestion and kidney function. Yellow stones accumulate positive energy, so they will be an excellent gift for someone who is active both physically and mentally.

Black calcite relieves the feeling of hopelessness. Instead, it lets you find faith in yourself, shows a way out of difficult situations, as well as helps accelerate the process of adaptation to new conditions. Overall, a stone of this color promotes recovery, revival, and rejuvenation.

Gray calcite brings peace and tranquility to the life of its owner. With its help, you can stay away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. On top of that, it relieves negative emotions.

Rare green calcite makes it easier to get along with people and enhance communication skills. At the same time, they are capable of reducing anxiety.

Green Calcite

Calcite for sale from KenKenGems

Calcite is a widespread mineral but this doesn’t mean that it can be ignored or neglected. On the contrary, you ought to get one of these crystals to acknowledge the creativity of nature. We have calcite in so many colors (blue, yellow, pink, black, just to name a few), shapes (spheres, teardrops, pears, ovals, rectangles, etc.), and forms (beads, strands, pendants, loose stones, and one-of-a-kind large calcites). So, if you’re looking for quality yet affordable jewels, welcome to KenKenGems. You won’t leave empty-handed.

Calcite for sale from Kenkengems

Calcite from Kenkengems