Azurite

Big Photo

Arizona, USA
44.07 carats
© Palagems

Azurite is named after the Persian word "lazhward", for its characteristic blue colour. It occurs in the weathered zone of copper ore-bodies usually in association with malachite. Azurite is less stable in open air than malachite, and is often pseudomorphically replaced by it. Or they can form together as azurmalachite.

Azurite is famous for its superb colour and interesting forms. It was formerly used for azure pigment. It can be cut into cabochons, faceted into gems and used for ornamental objects.

Azurite dust is toxic and must not be inhaled when cutting and polishing.

Azurite is also known as chessylite after the type locality at Chessy-les-Mines near Lyon, France.

Azurite Gemstones by Colour

This table shows the variety of hues this gemstone can be found in. Click on a photo for more information.
 

Azurite Gemstones by Size

This table shows distribution of Azurite gemstone sizes that are listed on this site. This can give a good indication as to the general availability of this gemstone in different sizes.
Contributed photos
Lightest:1.90 cts
Heaviest:44.07 cts
Average:22.64 cts
Total photos:5
Do you have a larger Azurite? Why not upload a photo?
1.90ct to 6.12ct6.12ct to 10.33ct10.33ct to 14.55ct14.55ct to 18.77ct18.77ct to 22.99ct22.99ct to 27.20ct27.20ct to 31.42ct31.42ct to 35.64ct35.64ct to 39.85ct39.85ct to 44.07ct
General Information
Other Names/Trade Names:
Chemical Formula
Cu
 
3
(OH)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
Michael O’Donoghue, Gems, Sixth Edition (2006)
More from other references
Photos of natural/un-cut material from mindat.org
Azurite Treatments
May be coated with colorless wax - Blue Chart Gem Identification, Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, 2010, p 3
Physical Properties of Azurite
Mohs Hardness3.5 to 4
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
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Specific Gravity3.70 to 3.90
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
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TenacityBrittle
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Cleavage QualityIndistinct
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
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FractureConchoidal
Arthur Thomas, Gemstones (2009)
Heat SensitivitySensitive to heat.
Arthur Thomas, Gemstones (2009)
Light SensitivityBright light may reduce its colour.
Arthur Thomas, Gemstones (2009)
Optical Properties of Azurite
Refractive Index1.720 to 1.850
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010) BlinkingMore from other references
Optical CharacterBiaxial/+
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
More from other references
Birefringence0.108 to 0.110
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010) DoublingMore from other references
PleochroismDistinct: dark-blue - light blue
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
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DispersionVisible
Arthur Thomas, Gemstones (2009)
Colour
Colour (General)Dark blue, azure blue
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
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Causes of ColourBlue, Cu2+ in elongated octahedral coordination
W. William Hanneman, Pragmatic Spectroscopy For Gemologists (2011)
TransparencyTransparent,Translucent,Opaque
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
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LustreVitreous
Arthur Thomas, Gemstones (2009)
Fluorescence & other light emissions
Fluorescence (General)None
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Crystallography of Azurite
Crystal SystemMonoclinic
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
More from other references
HabitCrystals of varied habit, often in spherical radiating groups. It is common in botryoidal or stalagmitic groups and
massive in veins with malachite.
Michael O’Donoghue, Gems, Sixth Edition (2006)
More from other references
Geological Environment
Where found:Azurite is found in the oxidized zones of copper deposits and is very often intimately associated with malachite to the extent that the name azur-malachite has been used.
Michael O’Donoghue, Gems, Sixth Edition (2006)
Inclusions in Azurite
Common as banded aggregate in wavy pattern: often intergrown with malachite - Blue Chart Gem Identification, Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, 2010, p 3
Further Information
Mineral information:Azurite information at mindat.org
Significant Gem Localities
France
 
  • Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
    • Rhône
      • Villefranche
        • Chessy-les-Mines
Gems, Sixth Edition, Michael O’Donoghue, 2006, p. 386
Namibia
 
  • Oshikoto Region
    • Tsumeb
Gems, Sixth Edition, Michael O’Donoghue, 2006, p. 386
Peru
 
USA
 
  • Arizona
    • Cochise Co.
      • Mule Mts
        • Warren District
No reference listed
Copyright © Jolyon & Katya Ralph 1993-2019. Site Map. Locality, gem & photograph data are the copyright of the individuals who submitted them. For more information please contact the . Gemdat.org is an online information resource dedicated to providing free gemmological information to all.