While scrolling through my Instagram feed, which is loaded with amazingly talented jewellers from around the world, there is one particular stone that pops up again and again; Turquoise. I always marvel at the beauty and diversity of this ancient wonder. Turquoise is one of those gems that comes in and out of fashion, but refuses to stay in the background for long. Recently it has made another resurgence into the spotlight. Here are some of my favourite examples of jewellery featuring this spectacular example of nature’s wonder.
Turquoise is perhaps the oldest stone in man’s history, the talisman of kings, shamans, and warriors. “In the oral histories of the Pueblo peoples, turquoise is the colour of creation. “Sky-stone” is what the Zuni call turquoise, a linguistic nod to the capacity of the heavens to protect and provide.”
The history and importance of turquoise extends to other arid lands beyond the southwest of the United States. “In ancient Egypt, King Tutankhatmun’s gold fineral mask was set with the stone. In Tibet, locals call the sky the “turquoise of heaven.” Iran is home to 6,000-year-old turquoise mines, the world’s oldest known for the “robin’s egg blue” stone, a valuable global trade item. The French obtained the Persian stone in Turkey, mistakenly calling it pierre turquoise, or Turkey stone. The name stuck.”
It is a stone of protection, strong and opaque, yet soothing to the touch, healing to the eye, as if carved from an azure heaven and slipped to earth. Its unique shade of blue, often blue-green, lends it name, Turquoise, to all things of this tranquil hue. The delicate veining or mottled webbing in cream or brown is inherent to the stone and serves to enhance its character.
Some of the information for this blog post was taken from an article entitled, “The Spirit in the Stone” by Carmella Padilla and published in the magazine “New Mexico”.