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A pale orange-red to deep red translucent stone that is a variety of Chalcedony. Carnelian was mined or gathered as an ornamental stone since at least 3000 BCE. It is found in Egypt, India and areas of Europe as water-worn pebbles. Carnelian was popular for amulets and scarabs and is still used as gemstones.
Synonyms and Related Terms
sard; cornelian; chalcedony; Karneol (Deut., Pol.); cornaline (Fr.); cornalina (Esp., Port.)
Physical and Chemical Properties
- No visible crystals
- Fracture = conchoidal, uneven, splintery
- Cleavage = absent
- Luster = waxy to vitreous
- Streak = white
- Fluorescence = generally inert
- Pleochroism = absent
|Refractive index||1.535 - 1.539|
|Birefringence||0.003 - 0.009|
Properties of Common Gemstones
Resources and Citations
- Mineralogy Database: Quartz
- Encyclopedia Britannica, http://www.britannica.com Comment: "carnelian." Accessed 14 Sept. 2001 .
- Gem Identification Lab Manual, Gemological Institute of America, 2016.
- C.W.Chesterman, K.E.Lowe, Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Rocks and Minerals, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1979
- Wikipedia: Carnelian (Accessed Sept. 14, 2005 and Dec 2022)