Jasper characteristics
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Jasper characteristics

Jasper, history and healing stone properties

Pendant with imperial jasper

The jasper is sediment that is mainly composed of silica. You can easily find it. It exists in different aspects and colors.

It is an impure variety of microcrystalline quartz that is made of a web of intertwined quartz crystals. You can generally identify it thanks to its opacity and the presence of color lines that is due to the compaction of several materials. The varieties include bands, orbicular patterns, heliotropes, plasmas, flints and prases….

The name of jasper comes from the Greek word Iaspis, that is coming from the Hebrew word Yashepheh, that could mean agate. The choice of the word comes from one of the stones of Aaron’s cloth that was identified as jasper. It would be a very rare green jasper stone. However, Pline the Old describes this stone as green and transparent whereas we consider that jasper is opaque. Therefore, there may be a mistake on the kind of stone.

The varieties of jasper

There is a huge variety of jaspers that are often wearing the name of the mine, of its region or the person who discovered it, of its color, its pattern… here are some examples:

History, legends and beliefs on jasper

history and healing properties of jasper

Ring with autumn jasper

The jasper exists in a lot of varieties. It has been used a lot all through history. It is used in decoration for chimneys, tables, pavements, sculptures, mosaics, vases… when you cut it, it can be used for jewelry. But to be honest, throughout history, a lot of stones were identified as jaspers whereas they were not. Therefore, we will keep this general description very superficial and we will focus more on each variety.

Egyptians used the jasper stone a lot. They would mainly carve red jasper amulets in the shape of a scarab which was the symbol of eternal life. They would also wear amulets in the shape of snake heads made of red jasper or carnelian and that were meant to protect them from snake bites. Several Egyptian sculptures were made of jasper such as the torso of the queen Tiyi which was carved in yellow jasper.

The Greeks linked the jasper to the mother goddess Gaia. This stone was also offered to Calisto, the goddess of the moon.

Romans would link jasper to the goddess of fertility and chastity, Bona Dea.

According to Scandinavian legends, the pommel of Siegfried’s sword, a dragon killer, had inlays of red jasper, which was the symbol of this animal's blood. It was also a proof of courage.

According to the Bible, it would be one of the 12 stones of Aaron’s cloth but we still are not sure about this fact as the stones were not all well identified.
In the Christian tradition, the jasper stone symbolizes the apostle Peter. He is the symbol of the hard rock on which Christ built his church.
In the Book of Revelations, Saint John describes the Christ on a jasper throne, which is a symbol of eternity, renewal and revelation.

American Indians used this stone too. Some varieties were used as amulets to protect them from the dangers during the night. Others were used for other purposes and more particularly to attract rain.

Japanese people also used it. They would use it to make magatama since the iron Age. This pendant in the shape of a claw or a coma, or a 9, had a very strong sacred symbol. It could hold the soul of a great warrior and was worn by priests or nobles, as a mark of their social status.

jasper, history and healing properties

Pendant with ocean jasper

In China, some seals used by the emperor were made of jasper.

Mines: you can find it frequently but each mine is unique. India, México, USA, Brazil, Madagascar and Russia.

Healing properties of jasper

  • Jasper could be used when internal organs start deteriorating. It would be recommended when a person has liver, kidneys, lungs, stomach or bladder problems.
  • It would be effective when you lose the sense of smell and would be perfect to calm down.
  • It would regulate the assimilation of minerals in the body such as iron, sulfur, zinc and manganese.
  • Jasper would relieve from headache, rheumatism, flu, multiple sclerosis and bronchitis.
  • It would be good for blood circulation and more specifically when your nose bleeds and for reducing hemorrhoids.

/!\ Please note that all healing properties listed are collected from various sources. This information is offered as a service and not meant to treat medical conditions.

Jupiter, Greek planet pendant in sterling silver and ocean jasper
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