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A selection of antique, hand-crafted Chinese jade (jadeite) buttons
Unworked jade

Jade is an ornamental stone. The term jade is applied to two different metamorphic rocks that are made up of different silicate minerals:

  • Nephrite consists of a microcrystaline interlocking fibrous matrix of the calcium, magnesium-iron rich amphibole mineral series tremolite (calcium-magnesium)-ferroactinolite (calcium-magnesium-iron). The middle member of this series with an intermediate composition is called actinolite (the silky fibrous mineral form is one form of asbestos). The higher the iron content the greener the colour.
  • Jadeite is a sodium- and aluminium-rich pyroxene. The gem form of the mineral is a microcrystaline interlocking crystal matrix.

The English word jade (as well as the English word "jadeite") is derived (via French: l'ejade and Latin: ilia[1]) from the Spanish term piedra de ijada (first recorded in 1565) or "loin stone", from its reputed efficacy in curing ailments of the loins and kidneys. Nephrite is derived from lapis nephriticus, the Latin version of the Spanish piedra de ijada.[2]

Nephrite and jadeite were used from prehistoric periods for hardstone carving. Jadeite has about the same hardness as quartz, while nephrite is somewhat softer. Both nephrite and jadeite are tough, but nephrite is tougher than jadeite. They can be delicately shaped. Thus it was not until the 19th century that a French mineralogist determined that "jade" was in fact two different materials. The trade name jadite is sometimes applied to translucent or opaque green glass.

Among the earliest known jade artifacts excavated from prehistoric sites are simple ornaments with bead, button, and tubular shapes.[3] Additionally, jade was used for axe heads, knives, and other weapons. As metal-working technologies became available, the beauty of jade made it valuable for ornaments and decorative objects. Jadeite measures between 6.5 and 7.0 Mohs hardness, and Nephrite between 5.5 and 6.0,[4] so it can be worked with quartz or garnet sand, and polished with bamboo or even ground jade.

Nephrite can be found in a creamy white form (known in China as "mutton fat" jade) as well as in a variety of green colours, whereas jadeite shows more colour variations, including blue, lavender-mauve, pink, and emerald-green colours. Of the two, jadeite is rarer, documented in fewer than 12 places worldwide. Translucent emerald-green jadeite is the most prized variety, both today and historically. As "quetzal" jade, bright green jadeite from Guatemala was treasured by Mesoamerican cultures, and as "kingfisher" jade, vivid green rocks from Burma became the preferred stone of post-1800 Chinese imperial scholars and rulers. Burma (Myanmar) and Guatemala are the principal sources of modern gem jadeite, and Canada of modern lapidary nephrite. Nephrite jade was used mostly in pre-1800 China as well as in New Zealand, the Pacific Coast and Atlantic Coasts of North America, Neolithic Europe, and south-east Asia. In addition to Mesoamerica, jadeite was used by Neolithic Japanese and European cultures.

Contents

History

Prehistoric and historic China

Jade dragon, Western Han Dynasty (202 BC – 9 AD)

During Neolithic times, the key known sources of nephrite jade in China for utilitarian and ceremonial jade items were the now depleted deposits in the Ningshao area in the Yangtze River Delta (Liangzhu culture 3400–2250 BC) and in an area of the Liaoning province and Inner Mongolia (Hongshan culture 4700–2200 BC).[5] As early as 6000 BC Dushan Jade was being mined. In the Yin Ruins of Shang Dynasty (1600 BC to 1050 BC) in Anyang, Dushan Jade ornaments was unearthed in the tomb of the Shang kings. Jade was used to create many utilitarian and ceremonial objects, ranging from indoor decorative items to jade burial suits. Jade was considered the "imperial gem". From about the earliest Chinese dynasties until present, the jade deposits in most use were not only from the region of Khotan in the Western Chinese province of Xinjiang but also from other parts of China, such as Lantian, Shaanxi. There, white and greenish nephrite jade is found in small quarries and as pebbles and boulders in the rivers flowing from the Kuen-Lun mountain range eastward into the Takla-Makan desert area. River jade collection was concentrated in the Yarkand, the White Jades (Yurungkash) and Black Jade (Karakash) Rivers. From the Kingdom of Khotan, on the southern leg of the Silk Road, yearly tribute payments consisting of the most precious white jade were made to the Chinese Imperial court and there transformed into objets d'art by skilled artisans as jade was considered more valuable than gold or silver. Jade became a favorite material for the crafting of Chinese scholars objects, such as rests for calligraphy brushes, as well as the mouthpieces of some opium pipes, due to the belief that breathing through jade would bestow longevity upon smokers who used such a pipe.[6]

Jadeite, with its bright emerald-green, pink, lavender, orange and brown colours was imported from Burma to China only after about 1800. The vivid green variety became known as Feicui (翡翠) or Kingfisher (feathers) Jade. It quickly replaced nephrite as the imperial variety of jade.

In the history of the art of the Chinese empire, jade has had a special significance, comparable with that of gold and diamonds in the West.[7] Jade was used for the finest objects and cult figures, and for grave furnishings for high-ranking members of the imperial family.[7]

Prehistoric and early historic Korea

Korean National Treasure No. 191, a gold crown with comma-shaped jades, was excavated from the Heavenly Horse Tomb of Silla and dates to the 5th century AD.

The use of jade and other greenstone was a long-term tradition in Korea (c. 850 BC – AD 668). Jade is found in small numbers of pit-houses and burials. The craft production of small comma-shaped and tubular 'jades' using materials such as jade, microcline, jasper, etc in southern Korea originates from the Middle Mumun Pottery Period (c. 850–550 BC).[8] Comma-shaped jades are found on some of the gold crowns of Silla royalty (c. AD 300/400–668) and sumptuous elite burials of the Korean Three Kingdoms. After the state of Silla united the Korean Peninsula in AD 668, the widespread popularisation of death rituals related to Buddhism resulted in the decline of the use of jade in burials as prestige mortuary goods.

Māori

Nephrite jade in New Zealand is known as pounamu in the Māori language (often called "greenstone" in New Zealand English) which plays an important role in Māori culture. It is considered a taonga, or treasure, and therefore protected under the Treaty of Waitangi, and the exploitation of it is restricted and closely monitored. It is found only in the South Island of New Zealand, known as Te Wai Pounamu in Māori—"The [land of] Greenstone Water", or Te Wahi Pounamu—"The Place of Greenstone".

Tools, weapons and ornaments were made of it; in particular adzes, the 'mere' (short club), and the Hei-tiki (neck pendant). These were believed to have their own mana, handed down as valuable heirlooms, and often given as gifts to seal important agreements. Nephrite jewellery of Maori design is widely popular with locals and tourists, although some of the jade used for these is now imported from British Columbia and elsewhere.[9]

Mesoamerica

Jadeite Pectoral from the Mayan Classic period (195 mm/7.7 in high)

Jade was a rare and valued material in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. The only source from which the various indigenous cultures, such as the Olmec and Maya, for example, could obtain jade was located in the Motagua River valley in Guatemala. Jade was largely an elite good, and was usually carved in a variety ways, whether serving as a medium upon which hieroglyphs were inscribed, or shaped into symbolic figurines. Generally, the material was highly symbolic, and it was often employed in the performance of ideological practices and rituals.

Other names

Besides the terms already mentioned, jadeite and nephrite are sometimes referred to by the following:

Jadeite

  • Agate verdâtre
  • Feitsui
  • Jadeit
  • Jadeita
  • Natronjadeit
  • Yunnan Jade
  • Yu-stone

Nephrite

  • Aotea
  • Axe-stone
  • B.C. Jade
  • Beilstein
  • British Columbian Jade
  • Canadian Jade
  • Dushan Jade
  • Nanyang Jade
  • Du Jade
  • Henan Yu
  • Grave Jade
  • Kidney Stone
  • Lapis Nephriticus
  • Nephrit
  • Nephrita
  • Nephrite (of Werner)
  • New Zealand Greenstone
  • New Zealand Jade
  • Siberian Jade
  • Sinkiang jade
  • Spinach Jade
  • Talcum Nephriticus
  • Tomb Jade

Faux jade

Many minerals are sold as jade. Some of these are: serpentine (also bowenite), carnelian, aventurine quartz, glass, grossularite, Vesuvianite, soapstone (and other steatites such as shoushan stone) and recently, Australian chrysoprase. "Korean jade," "Suzhou jade," "Styrian jade," "Olive jade", and "New jade" are all really serpentine; "Transvaal jade" or "African jade" is grossularite; "Peace jade" is a mixture of serpentine, stichtite, and quartz; "Mountain jade" is dyed dolomite marble.

In almost all dictionaries, the Chinese character 'yù' (玉) is translated into English as 'jade'. However, this frequently leads to misunderstanding: Chinese, Koreans, and Westerners alike generally fail to appreciate that the cultural concept of 'jade' is considerably broader in China and Korea than in the West. A more accurate translation for this character on its own would be 'precious/ornamental rock'. It is seldom, if ever, used on its own to denote 'true' jade in Mandarin Chinese; for example, one would normally refer to 'ying yu' (硬玉, 'hard jade') for jadeite, or 'ruan yu' (軟玉, 'soft jade') for nephrite. The Chinese names for many ornamental non-jade rocks also incorporate the character 'yù', and it is widely understood by native speakers that such stones are not, in fact, true precious nephrite or jadeite. Even so, for commercial reasons, the names of such stones may well still be translated into English as 'jade', and this practice continues to confuse the unwary.

Faux jades are sold to the public as inexpensive jewelry or beads. Nephrite and jadeite are sold at fine jewelers for considerably higher prices than semiprecious faux jades, which come from lower end stores. Reputable merchants can provide the scientific name of specific "jade" stones upon request, although clerks who vend faux jades may be unaware that multiple types of stone are sold under that name.

Enhancement

Jade may be enhanced (sometimes called "stabilized"). Note that some merchants will refer to these as Grades, but it is important to bear in mind that degree of enhancement is different from colour and texture quality. In other words, Type A jadeite is not enhanced but can have poor colour and texture. There are three main methods of enhancement, sometimes referred to as the ABC Treatment System:

  • Type A jadeite has not been treated in any way except surface waxing.
  • Type B treatment involves exposing a promising but stained piece of jadeite to chemical bleaches and/or acids and impregnating it with a clear polymer resin. This results in a significant improvement of transparency and colour of the material. Currently, infrared spectroscopy is the most accurate test for the detection of polymer in jadeite.
  • Type C jade has been artificially stained or dyed. The red colour of Red jade can be enhanced with heat. The effects are somewhat uncontrollable and may result in a dull brown. In any case, translucency is usually lost.
  • B+C jade is a combination of B and C: it has been both artificially dyed AND impregnated.
  • Type D jade refers to a composite stone such as a doublet comprising a jade top with a plastic backing.[10]

Gallery of Chinese jades

See also

Notes

  1. ^ http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=jade
  2. ^ Easby, Elizabeth Kennedy. Pre-Colombian Jade from Costa Rica. (1968). André Emmerich Inc., New York
  3. ^ Liu, Li. The Products of Minds as Well as Hands: Production of Prestige Goods in Neolithic and Early State Periods of China. Asian Perspectives 42(1):1-40, 2003, pg 2.
  4. ^ http://www.orionsgemz.com/Mohs.html Orionsgemz.com Retrieved on 06-01-07
  5. ^ Liu, Li 2003:3-15
  6. ^ Martin, Steven. The Art of Opium Antiques. Silkworm Books, Chiang Mai, 2007
  7. ^ a b Jade. Gemstone.org
  8. ^ Bale, Martin T. and Ko, Min-jung. Craft Production and Social Change in Mumun Pottery Period Korea. Asian Perspectives 45(2):159-187, 2006.
  9. ^ Salt, Donn, 1992, Stone, Bone and Jade - 24 New Zealand Artists, David Bateman Ltd, Auckland.
  10. ^ http://www.ssef-alumni.org/pdf/newsletter_3.pdf

References

  • Scott-Clark, Cathy and Levy, Adrian. (2002) The Stone of Heaven: Unearthing the Secret History of Imperial Green Jade. ISBN 0316525960

Further reading

External links


Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

Jade
by Edith Wharton

THE patient craftsman of the East who made
His undulant dragons of the veined jade,
And wound their sinuous volutes round the whole
Pellucid green redundance of the bowl,
Chiseled his subtle traceries with the same
Keen stone he wrought them in.
Nor praise, nor blame,
Nor gifts the years relinquish or refuse,
But only a grief commensurate with thy soul,
Shall carve it in a shape for gods to use.


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

JADE, a name commonly applied to certain ornamental stones, mostly of a green colour, belonging to at least two distinct species, one termed nephrite and the other jadeite. Whilst the term jade is popularly used in this sense, it is now usually restricted by mineralogists to nephrite. The word jade' is derived (through Fr. le jade for l'ejade) from Span. ijada (Lat. ilia), the loins, this mineral having been known to the Spanish conquerors of Mexico and Peru under the name of piedra de ijada or yjada (colic stone). The reputed value of the stone in renal diseases is also suggested by the term nephrite (so named by A. G. Werner from Gr. ve4pen, kidney), and by its old name lapis nephriticus. Jade, in its wide and popular sense, has always been highly prized by the Chinese, who not only believe in its medicinal value but regard it as the symbol of virtue. It is known, with other ornamental stones, under the name of yu or yu-chi (yustone). According to Professor H. A. Giles, it occupies in China the highest place as a jewel, and is revered as "the quintessence of heaven and earth." Notwithstanding its toughness or tenacity, due to a dense fibrous structure, it is wrought into complicated 1 The English use of the word for a worthless, ill-tempered horse, a "screw," also applied as a term of reproach to a woman, has been referred doubtfully to the same Spanish source as the O. Sp. ijadear, meaning to pant, of a broken-winded horse.

forms and elaborately carved. On many prehistoric sites in Europe, as in the Swiss lake-dwellings, celts and other carved objects both in nephrite and in jadeite have not infrequently been found; and as no kind of jade had until recent years been discovered in situ in any European locality it was held, especially by ,Professor L. H. Fischer, of Freiburg im Breisgau, Baden, that either the raw material or the worked objects must have been brought by some of the early inhabitants from a jade locality probably in the East, or were obtained by barter, thus suggesting a very early trade-route to the Orient. Exceptional interest, therefore, attached to the discovery of jade in Europe, nephrite having been found in Silesia, and jadeite or a similar rock in the Alps, whilst pebbles of jade have been obtained from many localities in Austria and north Germany, in the latter case probably derived from Sweden. It is, therefore, no longer necessary to assign the old jade implements to an exotic origin. Dr A. B. Meyer, of Dresden, always maintained that the European jade objects were indigenous, and his views have become generally accepted. Now that the mineral characters of jade are better understood, and its identification less uncertain, it may possibly be found with altered peridotites, or with amphibolites, among the old crystalline schists of many localities.

Nephrite, or true jade, may be regarded as a finely fibrous or compact variety of amphibole, referred either to actinolite or to trernolite, according as its colour inclines to green or white. Chemically it is a calcium-magnesium silicate, CaMg3(S103)4. The fibres are either more or less parallel or irregularly felted together, rendering the stone excessively tough; yet its hardness is not great, being only about 6 or 6.5. The mineral sometimes tends to become schistose, breaking with a splintery fracture, or its structure may be horny. The specific gravity varies from 2.9 to 3.18, and is of determinative value, since jadeite is much denser. The colour of jade presents various shades of green, yellow and grey, and the mineral when polished has a rather greasy lustre. Professor F. W. Clarke found the colours due to compounds of iron, manganese and chromium. One of the most famous localities for nephrite is on the west side of the South Island of New Zealand, where it occurs as nodules and veins in serpentine and talcose rocks, but is generally found as boulders. It was known to the Maoris as pounamu, or "green stone," and was highly prized, being worked with great labour into various objects, especially the clublike implement known as the mere, or pattoo-pattoo, and the breast ornament called hei-tiki. The New Zealand jade, called by old writers "green talc of the Maoris," is now worked in Europe as an ornamental stone. The green jade-like stone known in New Zealand as tangiwai is bowenite, a translucent serpentine with enclosures of magnesite. The mode of occurrence of the nephrite and bowenite of New Zealand has been described by A. M. Finlayson (Quart. Jour. Geol. Soc., 1909, p. 35 1). It appears that the Maoris distinguished six varieties of jade. Difference of colour seems due to variations in the proportion of ferrous silicate in the mineral. According to Finlayson, the New Zealand nephrite results from the chemical alteration of serpentine, olivine or pyroxene, whereby a fibrous amphibole is formed, which becomes converted by intense pressure and movement into the dense nephrite.

Nephrite occurs also in New Caledonia, and perhaps in some of the other Pacific islands, but many of the New Caledonian implements reputed to be of jade are really made of serpentine. From its use as a material for axe-heads, jade is often known in Germany as Beilstein (" axe-stone"). A fibrous variety, of specific gravity 3.18, found in New Caledonia, and perhaps in the Marquesas, was distinguished by A. Damour under the name of "oceanic jade." Much of the nephrite used by the Chinese has been obtained from quarries in the Kuen-lun mountains, on the sides of the Kara-kash valley, in Turkestan. The mineral, generally of pale colour, occurs in nests and veins running through hornblende-schists and gneissose rocks, and it is notable that when first quarried it is comparatively soft. It appears to have a wide distribution in the mountains, and has been worked from very ancient times in Khotan. Nephrite is said to occur also in the Pamir region, and pebbles are found in the beds of many streams. In Turkestan, jade is known as yashm or yeshm, a word which appears in Arabic as yeshb, perhaps cognate with iavires or jasper. The "jasper" of the ancients may have included jade. Nephrite is said to have been discovered in 1891 in the Nan-shan mountains in the Chinese province of Kan-suh, where it is worked. The great centre of Chinese jade-working is at Peking, and formerly the industry was active at Su-chow Fu. Siberia has yielded very fine specimens of dark green nephrite, notably from the neighbourhood of the Alibert graphite mine, near Batugol, Lake Baikal. The jade seems to occur as a rock in part of the Sajan mountain system. New deposits in Siberia were opened up to supply material for the tomb of the tsar Alexander III. A gigantic monolith exists at the tomb of Tamerlane at Samarkand. The occurrence of the Siberian jade has been described by Professor L. von Jaczewski.

Jade implements are widely distributed in Alaska and British Columbia, being found in Indian graves, in old shell-heaps and on the sites of deserted villages. Dr G. M. Dawson, arguing from the discovery of some boulders of jade in the Fraser river valley, held that they were not obtained by barter from Siberia, but were of native origin; and the locality was afterwards discovered by Lieut. G. M. Stoney. It is known as the Jade Mountains, and is situated north of Kowak river, about 150 miles from its mouth. The study of a large collection of jade implements by Professor F. W. Clarke and Dr G. P. Merrill proved that the Alaskan jade is true nephrite, not to be distinguished from that of New Zealand.

Jadeite is a mineral species established by A. Damour in 1863, differing markedly from nephrite in that its relation lies with the pyroxenes rather than with the amphiboles. It is an aluminium sodium silicate, NaAI(S103)2, related to spodumene. S. L. Penfield showed, by measurement, that jadeite is monoclinic. Its colour is commonly very pale, and white jadeite, which is the purest variety, is known as "camphor jade." In many cases the mineral shows bright patches of apple-green or emerald-green, due to the presence of chromium. Jadeite is much more fusible than nephrite, and is rather harder (6.5 to 7), but its most readily determined character is found in its higher specific gravity, which ranges from 3.20 to 3.41. Some jadeite seems to be a metamorphosed igneous rock.

The Burmese jade, discovered by a Yunnan trader in the 13th century, is mostly jadeite. The quarries, described by Dr F. Noetling, are situated on the Uru river, about 120 m. from Mogaung, where the jadeite occurs in serpentine, and is partly extracted by firesetting. It is also found as boulders in alluvium, and when these occur in a bed of laterite they acquire a red colour, which imparts to them peculiar value. According to Dr W. G. Bleeck, who visited the jade country of Upper Burma after Noetling, jadeite occurs at three localities in the Kachin Hills - Tawmaw, Hweka and Mamon. The jadeite is known as chauk-sen, and is sent either to China or to Mandalay, by way of Bhamo, whence Bhamo has come erroneously to be regarded as a locality for jade. Jadeite occurs in association with the nephrite of Turkestan, and possibly in some other Asiatic localities. In certain cases nephrite is formed by the alteration of jadeite, as shown by Professor J. P. Iddings. The Chinese feits'ui, sometimes called "imperial jade," is a beautiful green stone, which seems generally to be jadeite, but it is said that in some cases it may be chrysoprase. It is named from its resemblance in colour to the plumage of the kingfisher. The resonant character of jade has led to its occasional use as a musical stone.

In Mexico, in Central America and in the northern part of South America, objects of jadeite are common. The Kunz votive adze from Oaxaca, in Mexico, is now in the American Museum of Natural History, New York. At the time of the Spanish conquest of Mexico amulets of green stone were highly venerated, and it is believed that jadeite was one of the stones prized under the name of chalchihuitl. Probably turquoise was another stone included under this name, and indeed any green stone capable of being polished, such as the Amazon stone, now recognized as a green feldspar, may have been numbered among the Aztec amulets. Dr Kunz suggests that the chalchihuitl was jadeite in southern Mexico and Central America, and turquoise in northern Mexico and New Mexico. He thinks that Mexican jadeite may yet be discovered in places (Gems and Precious Stones of Mexico, by G. F. Kunz: Mexico, 1907).

Chloromelanite is Damour's name for a dense, dark mineral which has been regarded as a kind of jade, and was used for the manufacture of celts found in the dolmens of France and in certain Swiss lake-dwellings. It is a mineral of spinach-green or dark-green colour, having a specific gravity of 3.4, or even as high as 3.65, and may be regarded as a variety of jadeite rich in iron. Chloromelanite occurs in the Cyclops Mountains in New Guinea, and is used for hatchets or agricultural implements, whilst the sago-clubs of the island are usually of serpentine. Sillimanite, or fibrolite, is a mineral which, like chloromelanite, was used by the Neolithic occupants of western Europe, and is sometimes mistaken for a pale kind of jade. It is an aluminium silicate, of specific gravity about 3.2, distinguished by its infusibility. The jade terrace of J. R. Haiiy, discovered by H. B. de Saussure in the Swiss Alps, is now known as saussurite. Among other substances sometimes taken for jade may be mentioned prehnite, a hydrous calcium-aluminium silicate, which when polished much resembles certain kinds of jade. Pectolite has been used, like jade, in Alaska. A variety of vesuvianite (idocrase) from California, described by Dr. G. F. Kunz as californite, was at first mistaken for jade. The name jadeolite has been given by Kunz to a green chromiferous syenite from the jadeite mines of Burma. The mineral called bowenite, at one time supposed to be jade, is a hard and tough variety of serpentine. Some of the common Chinese ornaments imitating jade are carved in steatite or serpentine, while others are merely glass. The pate de riz is a fine white glass. The so-called "pink jade" is mostly quartz, artificially coloured, and "black jade," though sometimes mentioned, has no existence.

An exhaustive description of jade will be found in a sumptuous work, entitled Investigations and Studies in Jade (New York, 1906). This work, edited by Dr G. F. Kunz, was prepared in illustration of the famous jade collection made by Heber Reginald Bishop, and presented by him to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The work, which is in two folio volumes, superbly illustrated, was printed privately, and after too copies had been struck off on American hand-made paper, the type was distributed and the material used for the illustrations was destroyed. The second volume is a catalogue of the collection, which comprises 900 specimens arranged in three classes: mineralogical, archaeological and artistic. The important section on Chinese jade was contributed by Dr S. W. Bushell, who also translated for the work a discourse on jade- Yii-shuo by T'ang Jung-tso, of Peking. Reference should also be made to Heinrich Fischer's Nephrit and Jadeit (2nd ed., Stuttgart, 1880), a work which at the date of its publication was almost exhaustive. (F. W. R.*)


<< Jade, Germany

Jaen, Spain (Province) >>


Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also jade, jáde, and jäde

Contents

English

Proper noun

Singular
Jade

Plural
-

Jade

  1. A female given name from the precious stone, taken into general use in the 1970s.

Translations


French

Proper noun

Jade

  1. A female given name from the noun jade, popular in the 2000s.

Anagrams


German

Noun

Jade f.

  1. jade.

Gaming

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Jade


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Simple English

Jade is a kind of stone. We use the name "jade" for two different sorts of mineral. The first sort is nephrite. This is a form of actinolite (asbestos is a sort of actinolite, too). The second sort is the mineral jadeite, and it is a pyroxene. The first sort (nephrite) is harder than the second sort (jadeite). The first sort (jadeite) has more colors that the second sort (nephrite).

Nephrite is Ca2(Mg, Fe)5Si8O22(OH)2.
Jadeite is NaAlSi2O6.

The two sorts of jade look nearly the same. People only found that they were two different sorts in 1863. Jade is very hard. In the past, Chinese people and the Moaris used it to make knives and weapons. Later, when people could use metals, they liked jade because it looked nice and they thought it had special powers. Today people also use jade for jewelry.

Jade was found about 7000 years ago. The Chinese later made jewelry out of it. Only the rich could have jade because it was so rare and expensive. It was said that jade had healing powers and it was regarded as very lucky.

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