Foxfire Jewelers The Creative Custom Jewelry Studio since 1985

2250 North Coast Highway Newport Oregon 97365

(541) 265-RING    (541) 265-7464


Mention Turquoise, and most people will probably think of Native American silver jewelry set with the sky blue gemstone. Turquoise has always been highly venerated in Native American traditions. It is an essential presence in the Shaman's medicine bag. It can be a simple nugget or bead, or it may be carved in the shape of a totem animal, and adorned with feathers and bits of stone tied to it with sinew. The Pueblo people often placed Turquoise in the floors of their dwellings to bring good fortune. Although Turquoise is closely identified with Native Americans, its lore and appreciation stretch across the globe.

It was discovered by the ancient Egyptians around 3000 BC and was used widely in their finest jewelry and ornaments often combined with Lapis Lazuli and Carnelian as in the treasures of Tutankhamun's tomb. The Turquoise was carved into scarabs, and representations of the various gods and worn by the priests for ceremonial purposes. The ceramic Faience was developed by the Egyptians as an imitation for Turquoise and Lapis Lazuli.

Old European traditions associate Turquoise with horses, and hold that the stone will protect horses from all sorts of ills. In particular, it was said to prevent them from drinking overly cold water while overheated and foundering. Turquoise was said to enable its wearer to resist evil and maintain virtue. It was credited with helping achieve a state of higher consciousness and resistance to weakness. It was also thought to protect its wearer from falling, particularly from towers and horses.

Tibetans revere the stone and believe it represents good fortune, good health, and that it provides powerful protection against the evil eye. Turquoise is used in Tibetan healing ceremonies, where a Turquoise bead is thought to hold the shadow soul and draw out illness from the body. Buddhists associate Turquoise with knowledge of the future.

Many Tibetans still wear necklaces with Turquoise, and coral beads which are hundreds of years old, and Turquoise often adorns ceremonial objects. In both Tibet and Nepal, Turquoise is highly esteemed and can also serve as currency.

Today the major sources of Turquoise are Arizona, plus Australia, Chile, China, and Mexico. The stone often occurs with veins of matrix which add interest to its beauty. Body oils can sometimes cause Turquoise to turn green with time.
Hardness: 5-6

Toughness: Fair to good

Alternate birthstone for December