Earth Treasures: Linarite
By Chisom Ibemere
Linarite is a rare and beautiful gemstone which belongs to the mineral class of sulfates.
It was first discovered in 1822 by French mineralogist, Amiéla-Auguste Linarès in Linares, Spain and was named in his honor.
Linarite gemstone typically occurs in oxidized copper ore deposits in association with minerals such as malachite, azurite, and cerussite.
Other locations aside Spain where deposits of Linarite can be found includes Austria, Italy, Germany, the United States, Mexico, and Australia.
Linarite is a relatively scarce gemstone and is not commonly found in large quantities in most location. Due to its rarity, Linarite is primarily used as a collector’s gemstone and is highly sought after by mineral enthusiasts and gemstone collectors.
Its striking blue color and unique crystal formations make it an attractive addition to any collection. It is not typically used in mainstream jewelry due to its relative softness and fragility.
Linarite is a copper sulfate mineral with an orthorhombic crystal structure and is known for its vivid and intense blue color, ranging from bright azure blue to deep navy blue.
The gemstone often forms prismatic crystals or acicular aggregates. Linarite has a Mohs hardness of 2.5 to 3, which makes it relatively soft compared to other gemstones.
Linarite’s value is largely based on its rarity, intense blue color, and crystal quality. As a collector’s gemstone, its value is determined by factors such as size, transparency, richness of color, and overall aesthetic appeal.
Due to its scarcity, Linarite is not widely available in the commercial market, making it a gemstone with limited global value.
Pricing and demand for Linarite can vary significantly based on the supply and demand dynamics within the collector and mineral specimen market.