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The Captivating World of Lapis Lazuli: Quality Factors Worth Trade Names and More

Lapis Lazuli: A Treasured GemstoneLapis lazuli, an opaque blue gemstone and one of the oldest precious stones known to humanity, has been prized for millennia for its intense midnight-blue color, often with sparkling pyrite flecks. This valuable stone is found in remote regions, including Afghanistan, Russia, Chile, Italy, and Pakistan.

It is considered a gem-quality material because of its rarity and beauty. Lapis lazuli has immense historical significance and cultural heritage.

Let us dive deep and explore the quality factors that make lapis lazuli a prized possession. Quality Factors of Lapis Lazuli:

Uniform Royal Blue Color:

The color of lapis lazuli is one of the most important quality factors.

Gem-quality lapis lazuli is a vivid and uniform royal blue color, with hints of violet. The blue of the stone should be vibrant, not pale or washed out in any way.

The color should be evenly distributed and consistent throughout the stone. Absence of Calcite Matrix and Pyrite Veins:

Another important quality factor is the absence of calcite matrix and pyrite veins.

Calcite is a white, chalky mineral that can often be found with lapis lazuli. The presence of calcite detracts from the overall beauty of the stone and lowers its value.

Pyrite veins, on the other hand, can be desirable in small amounts as they give the stone its characteristic sparkle. However, too much pyrite can overwhelm and detract from the vibrant blue color of the stone.

Therefore, a top-quality lapis lazuli is free from both calcite matrix and pyrite veins. Exceptional Value of Top-Quality Lapis Lazuli:

A top-quality lapis lazuli is a rarity and hence is highly valued.

The price of lapis lazuli increases with its intensity and uniformity of color, absence of calcite matrix and pyrite veins, and its overall size. Large, top-quality lapis lazuli specimens can be worth thousands of dollars per carat.

The rarity and value of lapis lazuli have made it a much sought-after stone throughout history. Ancient cultures, including the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, revered it for its beauty, spiritual properties and uses.

The ancient Egyptians believed that lapis lazuli had healing powers, and even used it as a pigment for their famous blue frescoes and pottery. The Greeks and Romans wore lapis lazuli, believed to enhance their mental and physical abilities.


Lapis lazuli, with its hypnotic blue hues, is a gemstone like no other. Its intense color, rarity, and cultural significance make it one of the most desirable stones in the world.

Whether it is set into jewelry or displayed in a collection, lapis lazulis value only increases with time. So if you are a gemstone enthusiast, it is time for you to get your hands on some precious lapis lazuli and experience its beauty.

Lapis Lazuli, one of the oldest gemstones known to humanity, has been revered for its beauty and worth throughout the ages. From the ancient world to the Renaissance, lapis lazuli has been valued for its deep, mesmerizing blue color.

In this article, we will explore the historical significance of lapis lazuli and its worth in today’s market. Historical Significance:

Lapis lazuli has been used for a variety of purposes over the centuries.

The ancient Egyptians used it as a cosmetic, to adorn their eyes and lips, and as an ornamental and decorative stone. Lapis lazuli was also used by the ancient Greeks and Romans as a pigment in their paintings and frescoes.

Renaissance artists, including Raphael and Michelangelo, also used lapis lazuli in their paintings, as it was believed to symbolize purity, truth, and wisdom. Some of the most famous ancient artifacts made with lapis lazuli are scarabs, small beetle-shaped amulets that were used as a symbol of rebirth in ancient Egyptian culture.

The most iconic piece of lapis lazuli is perhaps Tutankhamun’s mask, which features a stunning lapis lazuli beard. This piece alone highlights the immense value placed on the stone by ancient civilizations.

Worth and Price of Lapis Lazuli:

Lapis Lazuli is undoubtedly one of the most popular opaque gemstones in the world, and its worth is in direct contrast to its demand. Unlike other popular gemstones like diamonds or emeralds, which are often mined year-round, lapis lazuli can take several months or even years to mine.

Delicately crafted lapis lazuli stones are, therefore, quite valuable. While lapis lazuli is not as valuable as other gemstones, such as sapphires or rubies, it is still valued for its deep blue color, which is so unique that it cannot be replicated or imitated.

The worth of lapis lazuli varies in the market, with the quality and rarity being the main factors. Typical prices for lapis lazuli can vary depending on a few factors.

Cabochons, beads, and tumble stones typically range from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars, depending on the quality and size of the stone. Even small cuts and carvings of lapis lazuli can hold immense value, as the beauty of the stone is captivating.

Some retailers sell lapis lazuli-based items at very reasonable prices. Factors that influence the value of lapis lazuli are primarily the stone’s color, matrix, craftsmanship, weight, and enhancement.

The intensity and uniformity of its blue color have the most significant impact on the stone’s value. Generally, the more vivid, vibrant, and evenly-colored the stone, the higher the value.

The presence or absence of calcite matrix and pyrite veins can impact the value of lapis lazuli. A clean, uniform stone with little or no matrix or pyrite carries a higher value.

The quality of the cut and finish of the stone, and the skill of the artisan or lapidary also plays a crucial role in determining the worth of lapis lazuli. A stone precisely and skillfully cut to enhance its natural beauty can command a much higher price.

Weight is another critical factor, with larger stones often being more expensive than smaller ones. The enhancement of lapis lazuli to increase its beauty and value is an accepted practice in the industry.

The most common method is to add dye or filler materials to improve the stone’s color or fill in cracks or imperfections, which can enhance or compromise the stone’s value. Extreme cases of lapis lazuli prices include historical adornments that contain lapis lazuli and have been sold at exceptionally high prices.

The “Crown of Queen Elizabeth” sold at auction for $12.8 million, and the “Blue Moon Diamond,” an extremely rare diamond mounted in lapis lazuli, sold for a staggering $48.5 million. Conclusion:

Lapis Lazuli is one of the oldest and most treasured gemstones known to humanity.

Its worth and value reflect its rarity and beauty, which have captivated civilizations for centuries. While other gemstones may be more valuable, lapis lazuli holds a unique place in the world of gemstones with its stunning, captivating deep blue hue.

Whether it is used for cosmetic purposes, artistic expressions, or decorative jewelry, lapis lazuli remains a true gemstone. Lapis Lazuli Trade Names:

Lapis lazuli comes from various sources worldwide, including Afghanistan/Persia, Russia/Siberia, and Chile.

It has been mined and traded for ages, and each source has its unique characteristics. These differences have led to the development of trade names, an essential aspect of lapis lazuli trade.

Trade names act as a shorthand way for dealers to differentiate between different sources and types of lapis lazuli. There are many different trade names of lapis lazuli that one might encounter when shopping for this stone.

For example, Afghan lapis lazuli (also called Persian lapis), is considered the finest quality. Its deep blue color is often mixed with bright or white flecks of calcite and pyrite.

Russian or Siberian lapis lazuli is often considered the second-best quality and is characterized by a deep blue hue and no flecks of pyrite. Chilean lapis lazuli is paler and often less expensive.

While other sources of lapis lazuli exist, such as Argentinean and Pakistani, they are considered minor in comparison. Differences Between Trade Names:

Trade names hint at the differences between the lapis lazuli, such as their color, value, and source.

While lapis lazuli is typically blue, the precise hue, saturation, and tone can vary widely. The finest and most valuable lapis lazuli has a deep, vibrant blue color with very few inclusions or veins.

The intensity of the blue color, combined with the consistency, is what makes high-quality lapis lazuli gem-grade. Lazurite is the blue mineral that characterizes lapis lazuli.

Depending on the source, lapis lazuli may also contain hayne, sodalite, nosean, pyrite, and calcite. The amount of these minerals, as well as their location on the stone, can impact its value.

Afghan/Persian lapis is considered the most valuable, with intense blue color and visible golden pyrite flecks. Russian/Siberian lapis is known for having a deep blue hue with no visible pyrite.

While not as valuable as Afro-Persian or Russian lapis, Chilean lapis is still a beautiful stone with unique features such as variations in color, with veins of white calcite or aluminum-colored pyrite. Where to Buy Lapis Lazuli:

While it is possible to purchase lapis lazuli online, it comes with a certain amount of risk.

Online platforms are often filled with dyed or fake stones, mislabeled, or enhanced in ways that affect their value. It is essential to purchase lapis lazuli from specialized mineral resellers or collectors, who have a reputation to maintain and can provide a guarantee that the stone is authentic and not enhanced.

One of the best ways to purchase high-quality lapis lazuli is through a direct deposit purchase from the mine. Afghanistan is the most common source of lapis lazuli, and purchasing directly from the mines there can provide an excellent source of high-quality stones at a reasonable price.

Chile and Siberia also have mines of lapis lazuli, although they tend to produce lower quality stones. If purchasing directly from the mine is not an option, reputable gemstone resellers are the next best source for quality lapis lazuli.

They should have a proven track record of selling genuine stones and be able to provide certification of authenticity and origin. Conclusion:

Lapis Lazuli trade names are an essential aspect of lapis lazuli trade, allowing for differentiation between the different sources and types of lapis lazuli available in the market.

They also signify the variations in color, value, and other characteristics of the stone. It is important to exercise caution while purchasing lapis lazuli online, as there is a high prevalence of dyed or fake stones in the market.

Purchasing directly from the mine or reputable gemstone resellers is the best way to ensure that the stones are genuine and of high quality. With its unique color and historical significance, lapis lazuli continues to hold its place in the world of gemstones.


Lapis lazuli, one of the oldest and most treasured gemstones, has captured the world’s attention for centuries with its mesmerizing blue hue, rarity, and historical significance. We have explored the quality factors that make it so prized, its historical uses, the worth and price of this gemstone, and where to buy it.

Lapis lazuli trade names are also important to understand, enabling buyers to differentiate between sources and types of lapis lazuli. With its unique beauty and cultural significance, lapis lazuli remains a highly sought-after gemstone that has stood the test of time.


1. Is lapis lazuli always blue?

A: Yes, lapis lazuli is typically a deep blue color. However, the exact hue, saturation, and tone can vary widely depending on the source.

2. How can I tell if lapis lazuli is genuine?

A: The best way is to purchase lapis lazuli from a reputable dealer who can provide certification and guarantees of the stone’s authenticity. 3.

Is lapis lazuli valuable? A: Yes, lapis lazuli is valuable, particularly the high-quality stones that are deeply blue and free of inclusions.

4. Can lapis lazuli be enhanced or dyed?

A: Yes, lapis lazuli can be enhanced or dyed to improve its color or fill in cracks or imperfections, but these practices can affect its value. 5.

Where can I buy lapis lazuli? A: Lapis Lazuli can be purchased from specialized mineral resellers or collectors, or directly from a mine, reputable gemstone resellers, or certified dealers.

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