Is a type of quartz (silica), chiefly chalcedony, characterised by its fineness of grain and brightness of color. Although agates may be found in various kinds of rock, they are classically associated with volcanic rocks but can be common in certain metamorphic rocks which are the result of the transformation of a pre-existing rock types. Metamorphic rocks make up a large part of the Earth’s crust and are classified by texture and by chemical and mineral assemblage. Chalcedony is more soluble than quartz under low-temperature conditions, despite the two minerals being chemically identical.
The colorful agate and other chalcedonies were obtained over 3,000 years ago from the Achates River, now the Drillo, in Sicily. Most agates occur as nodules in volcanic rocks or ancient lavas where they represent cavities originally produced by the disengagement of volatiles in the molten mass which were then filled, wholly or partially, by siliceous matter deposited in regular layers upon the walls. Such agates, when cut transversely, exhibit a succession of parallel lines, often of extreme tenuity, giving a banded appearance to the section. Such stones are known as banded agate, riband agate and striped agate.
Some 3,000 years ago the ancient Egyptians sought colourful agates and other chalcedonies from the Aghates River (now called the Drillo River) in Sicily. As a consequence, many agate artefacts and jewellery have been found in the tombs of long dead Kings and Queens of ancient Egypt.
There are many types of agates. I’ll mention a few here. Judy Hall says that Agates are grounding stones, bringing about emotional, physical and intellectual balance. They aid in centering and stabilizing physical energy. Agate has the power to harmonize yin and yang that hold the universe in place. Blue green agates are usually made glass and has no therapeutic properties. Green Agate enhances mental and emotional flexibility and improves decision-making. Pink Agate promotes love between parent and child.
Botswana Agate (found only in Botswana, Africa), is beneficial for smokers and those who want to quit. It helps to look to solutions rather than dwelling on problems. It helps you to explore unknown territory and your own creativity.. At mental level it helps you see the bigger picture, and at emotional level it gently releases repression.
Blue Lace Agate, is a wonderful healing stone. Its soft energy is cooling and calming, bringing peace to mind. It is particularly effective for activating and healing the throat chakra, allowing free expression of thoughts and feelings.
Dendritic Agate, is known as the stone of plenitude. It brings abundance and fullness to all areas of life, including busines and agriculture (enhances yield of crops or maintain health of house plants). It creates a peaceful environment, both inner and outer.
Fire Agate is a layered stone. The layers are small enough that light entering them forms interference colors known as “fire.” The gem is thought to be formed when hot water saturated with colloidal silica and iron oxide invades cavities in country rock and begin to cool. Its energy is calming, bringing safety and security. It supports during difficult times.
Moss Agate, is said to refresh the soul and enable to see the beauty in all you behold. It is helpful in reducing sensitivity to weather and environmental pollutants. Extremely beneficial for anyone employed in agriculture or associated with botany. A birthing crystal, Moss Agate assists midwives in their work, lessening pain and ensuring good delivery. It is also a stone of new beginnings and release from blockages or spiritual fetters.
The Lake Superior agate is a type of agate stained by iron and found on the shores of Lake Superior. Its wide distribution and iron-rich bands of color reflect the gemstone’s geologic history in Minnesota. In 1969 the Lake Superior agate was designated by the Minnesota Legislature as the official state gemstone.
Agate Creek in far North Queensland is the acknowledged Australian source for attractively patterned agates that occur in and are weathered from amygdaloidal basalt of Carboniferous age. Agate Creek agates are renowned both for the beauty and diversity of their attractive colour patterns. It is a pity that agate from Agate Creek in North Queensland is little appreciated outside of Australia, for this agate displays nearly every conceivable colour and pattern that is possible to observe in agate.
Agate in Quartz