My wife got this gemstone yesterday as a gift for her birthday. Despite its name it is not a diet cooldrink :).
It is blue stone which is apparently used mostly as a ornamental stone. Being a rough sample, I mistakenly first thought it was Lapis Lazuli, but it seems I wasn’t too far off. It is a member fo the Sodalite group together with Hauyne, Nosean and Lazurite which are common constituents of Lapis Lazuli. Sodalite is a scarce mineral that can be rock forming. Her gemstone looks pretty much like the one below.
Discovered in 1806 in Greenland, sodalite did not become important as an ornamental stone until 1891 when vast deposits of fine material were discovered in Ontario, Canada. It has since been named Princess Blue after Princess Patricia who, upon visiting Ontario some time after its discovery, chose sodalite as interior decoration for Marlborough House in England.
Its light to dark pure blue color is well known in the semi-precious stone trade. A light, relatively hard yet fragile mineral, sodalite is named after its sodium content; in mineralogy it may be classed as a feldspathoid. Minerals whose chemistries are close to that of the alkali feldspars but are poor in silica (SiO2) content, are called feldspathoids. Localities that have feldspathoids are few but some produce large quantities of sodalite. Sodalite, when not blue, is hard to distinguish from other feldspathoids. It is the only feldspathoid that contains chlorine. Sodalite dissolved in a dilute solution of HNO3 gives a positive chlorine test obtained from some swimming pool test kits.
Sodalite may also be grey, yellow, green, or pink and is often mottled with white veins or patches. The more uniformly blue material is used in jewellery, where it is fashioned into cabochons and beads. Lesser material is more often seen as facing or inlay in various applications.
Although very similar to lazurite and lapis lazuli, sodalite is never quite comparable, being a royal blue rather than ultramarine. Sodalite also rarely contains pyrite, a common inclusion in lapis. It is further distinguished from similar minerals by its white (rather than blue) streak.
Its consists of Sodium aluminium silicate with chlorine (Na4Al3(SiO4)3Cl). They are found in silica poor rocks containing other silica poor minerals and no quartz.
The picture below is a hippo ornament carved from sodalite which demonstrates the mineral’s poor cleavage – cracks can be seen throughout the stone.
Below : Purple sodalite with some crystal faces, supporting a very sharp, transparent winchite crystal, terminated on one end.
Judy Hall states the following healing properties :
- By stimulating the Pineal Gland, Sodalite clears the Third Eye, and deepens meditation
- Helps you to remain true to yourself and stand up for your beliefs
- Blocks computers emanations – clears electromagnetic pollution
- Sodalite is said to promote companionship, and can be used in group settings, where cooperation is needed
- It encourages rational thought, objectivity, truth and intuitive perception
- Brings emotional balance and calms panic attacks
- Enhances self-esteem, self-acceptance and self-trust
- Balances the metabolism, overcomes calcium deficiencies, and cleanses the lymphatic system and organs, boosting the immune system
- Combats radiation damage and insomnia
- Cools fevers, lowers blood pressure etc.