Stone Hardness and the Mohs Scale

There are beautiful stones beyond number, but setting them in jewelry can be a challenge based solely on the hardness or softness of the stone itself.

The Mohs scale was developed to measure the hardness of stones. Talc or sulfur is a 1 on the scale, meaning they can be easily be scratched with a fingernail.

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The Magnificent Optical Calcite

Optical calcite is one of the most interesting specimens I've run across. It has an optical effect, it can have lovely rainbows, it's used even today in scienctific instruments, the Vikings used it to navigate the world, and it's cool!

It is called "optical" calcite because of its double-vision characteristic, as you can see by the finger below.

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