Agatesare known to occur in virtually all countries across the globe. In fact, itwould be virtuallyimpossible to name a single country on the globe that does not have at leastone identified source of this common stone. The global abundance of agate canbe explained by its mineral content. It primarily is made from silica.

Dueto the fact that silica is the most commonly occurring mineral on the surfaceof the earth, the common occurrence of agates is no surprise. In the formativeyears of the earths crust, i.e. more than fifty million years ago, waterdissolved silica in rock formations and volcanic eruptions on the surface ofthe earth. When the water gradually evaporated with time the silicon dioxidewas left behind. Under the forces of nature the solid residue became hard andwas modified to agates that are discovered today. The chief reason that givesagates their vivid patterns is that the silica wasdeposited in definite layers. Each layer included a unique set of secondaryminerals, many of which altered the patterns of the basic mineral silica.

Devoteesof metaphysics say that agates enhance a wide range of positive attributes.Most commonly, agates can assist in balancing energy, provide courage to thewearer, calm the emotions, help a person in quick healing and aid with theoverall health and protection of the person. Pre-teens usually are said tobenefit from its powers. It is for this reason that agates are is said to be the stone of choice for ornaments. In the past, this stonehas symbolized courage. Warriors going into battle adorned their armor withagates for they believed that agate made them strong. There are those who alsohave faith in the power of agates because they are supposed to get the juicesof creativity flowing and enhance intelligence. These stones are thought tocleanse the aura by mitigating undesirable thoughts. Agates may help friends,and aiding being faithful. So fans will often put on a sterling pendant or someother item containing agate to benefit from its energy.

Thereare dozens of types of agates found on the face of the earth. In this range ofstones, certain species of agates require special mention. Botswana agates often display striking colors and gorgeous concentric patterns. Botswana agates are very popular in fashion jewellery. Fire agates from Central America arealso used to make jewellery. Fire agates are brownish-orange in color as aconsequence of the presence of ferric minerals within the silica matrix. Thesepatterns provide their own charm to gemstone jewellery.

Withinthe realm of jewellery design, agates have inspired a wide range of designs dueto the dazzling array of patterns and colors in which they can be found, andbecause they are affordable. Because of their high hardness, most agates can besmooth cut and polished relatively easily. Colorful agates are mounted insilver settings to create beautiful silver pendants. Agate beads are often cutas cabochons. Individual beads can be spherical, depending on the preference ofthe designer.


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