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About Minerals

Rutilated Quartz

by Dave Wester

First off, quartz is the most common mineral on Earth. It is found in nearly every geological environment and is a component of almost every rock type. I'll bet somewhere in your collection you have at least one piece of quartz. Did you know that it makes up about 12% of the earth's crust, occurring in a wide variety of igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks? It is also the most varied in terms of variety and color. Quartz is a 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness but you already know that because we've spoken about that several times before. The name quartz comes from the Saxon word querklufterz which meant cross vein ore.

Rutilated quartz (sometimes referred to as Cupid's darts, Venus hair stone, and fleches d'amour) is quite simply quartz stone with rutile enclosures. Rutile is a mineral that is made up mostly of titanium dioxide, or Ti02. As a mineral, rutile is very high on the refractive index and disperses more than almost any other mineral. This means that when rutile appears in other minerals, it almost always appears in long, thin shots of color. Rutilus is, in fact, the Latin word for red. The mineral gained this name because some specimens are a lovely deep red color. Rutile, however, can also appear in brown and gray tones. Rutile often forms needle-like crystal inclusions inside quartz and this form of quartz is known as rutilated quartz and it looks like small bars of imbedded gold. Rutile is a 6 on the Mohs scale. Because of the difference in hardness between the two materials and because of the way rutile forms inside, this can be a difficult stone to attain a smooth surface without pits.

Rutilated quartz is found in Australia, Brazil, Kazakhstan, Madagascar, Norway, Pakistan and the United States.

From a mythical perspective, rutilated quartz is believed to bring forth each person's strengths, originality, aids sleep, relate to others. Rutile itself is said to intensify the metaphysical properties of its host crystal and to enhance one's under standing of difficult situations. It is also said to enhance creativity and to relieve depression and loneliness. Rutilated quartz is also believed to slow down the aging process and is said to be a strong healer. Guess I'll give it a try and see if it helps with my hair line.

From The Council Reporter 11/12