ROCK TRIVIA: JADE
The name jadeite is derived from the Spanish phrase "piedra de ijada" which means "stone of the side". It was believed to cure kidney stones if it was rubbed against the side of the body. The Latin version of the name, lapis nephriticus, is the origin of the term nephrite, another variety of jade.
The Mayans and the Aztecs used Jade for medicinal purposes as well as for jewelry, ornaments, and religious artifacts..
Jadeite first came to China from Myanmar in the late 1700s, and late eighteenth and early nineteenth century carvers created masterpieces that are unsurpassed even today.
Jadeite's color commonly ranges from white through pale apple green to deep jade green but can also be blue-green, pink and lavender. Its translucence can be anywhere from entirely solid through opaque to almost clear.
The Jade found in California, Alaska, British Columbia and Guatemala is mostly Nephrite; Jadeite is found in Myanmar, New Zealand, Kazakhstan and Turkestan.
This huge boulder of nephrite jade was found in British Columbia, Canada. It was discovered in 2000 and the 18-ton specimen was called “the find of the millennium.” The nine-foot-tall “Jade Buddha for Universal Peace” is the world’s largest Buddha carved from gemstone-quality jade. It is considered priceless and weighs almost 10,000 pounds.