Lapis Lazuli

From Ur To Nowadays…

Lapis lazuli is an ornamental stone of the silicate family.
It is recognized by its blue color and its golden inclusions of pyrite and white calcite.
The word lapis means stone in Latin and lazuli means blue in Persian.
It is a stone that is used in a wide variety of fields: painting, decoration and jewelery.

Crushed stone was used as a pigment in painting until the early nineteenth century. This blue sea was that of the sky or the mantle of the Virgin.

It was also used for illuminations in the Middle Ages.

White gold, diamonds, lapis lazuli Pendant, Louis Vuitton 

 

A STONE KNOWN SINCE THE SUMERIAN CIVILIZATION

The use of lapis lazuli goes back more than 7000 years. In Mesopotamia, the Sumerians of Ur used it to adorn their jewels, but also to make amulets or cylinder seals …
The Egyptians used lapis to inlay the eyes of their statues or to decorate sarcophagi, headdresses and pecs.
In the Middle Ages, it was thought that the lapis had aphrodisiac virtues. The men crushed the stone, mixed the powder with milk and drank the whole mixture.

Yellow gold, diamonds, turquoise, lapis lazuli Brooch, Cartier

 

DEPOSITS

Historically, the largest production is in Sar-e-Sang, Afghanistan. The mine still provides today beautiful deep blue stones.
The Ovalle mine in Chile also produces a large amount of stones but smaller and much paler.
Russia, Burma, the United States and Angola also have mines, but they are not very important.

Rose gold, diamonds, lapis lazuli Watch, Piaget

 

JEWELRY

When used in jewelry, lapis lazuli is often cut in cabochon and polished. It is possible to add resin or wax on the surface to improve the hardness of the stone which is only 5 (Mohs Scale).

Yellow gold, lapis lazuli “Serpent Bohème” Ring, Boucheron 

The great houses of Place Vendôme, such as Cartier, Piaget, Boucheron or Van Cleef And Arpels have always used this stone for its incredible color.

Yellow gold, diamonds, coral, lapis lazuli Brooch, Sterlé

Yellow gold, lapis lazuli “Alhambra” Necklace, Van Cleef And Arpels

If you are interested in lapis lazuli, don’t hesitate to discover what les Pierres de Julie have to offer in the store…

We are also available for any free expertise of your lapis lazuli jewelry, for that you can send an email with your photos to contact@lespierresdejulie.com.

Welcome to our store in the Swiss village of the 15th arrondissement of Paris!

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