Named for its moon-like sheen, Moonstone (or Hecatolite) is a Feldspar mineral, the same family as the Labradorite.
Moonstone exhibits a soft, watery opaqueness and a silvery-white reflection called chatoyancy that moves as a line across the surface as light varies. It occurs in delicate shades of peach, yellow, blue, gray…
Since earliest times, it has been associated with the magic of the moon
Our ties to the moon are strong. In cyclic perfection, it creates the tides and rhythms the Earth, influences our behaviors and emotions.
Ancient civilizations used moonstone in their jewelry for millennia. They carried it as an amulet of protection for travelers or as a channel to wisdom. The Romans also admired it, as they believed it was born from solidified rays of the Moon. Both the Romans and Greeks associated it with their lunar deities, respectively Diana and Selene. For the Celts, it honored Cerridwen, Goddess of Inspiration and Knowledge.
In the Orient, It has always been a sacred stone in India with a special significance for lovers, and is still a traditional wedding gift there.
“Papillons et Chauves-souris”, an enamel, moonstone and gold pocket watch by René Lalique, circa 1899-1900.
In more recent history, moonstone became popular during the Art Nouveau period . French goldsmith René Lalique and many others created a large quantity of jewelry using this stone.
It is as well the Florida State Gemstone. It was designated as such in 1970 to commemorate the Moon landings, which took off from Kennedy Space Center. Despite it being the Florida State Gemstone, it does not naturally occur in the state.
The moonstones on the market mainly come from India. However, deposits of it also occur in Armenia (mainly from Lake Sevan), Australia, the Austrian Alps, Mexico, Madagascar, Myanmar, Norway, Poland, Sri Lanka and the United States.