The International Colored Gemstone Commission (ICGC) recognized ammolite as a brand-new biological gemstone in 1981, making it the most uncommon gemstone in the world. Ammolite is mined in Alberta, Canada.
An ancient Egyptian deity called Ammon thought these animals were sacred, and the term "ammonite" comes from him. The ancient literature depicts the head of a ram with twisted spiral horns, which are evocative of the spiraling shells of an ammonite. This is the representation of Ammon. The Roman historian Pliny the Elder had the belief that ammonite might bring about dreams of prophecy, which led him to regard it as the holiest of stones.
Mineralized ammonite, the extinct ancestor of the nautilus, is known as ammolite. This marine organism, which existed from the Paleozoic to the late Cretaceous period (about 65–70 million years ago), was characterized by its coiled shells and gas chambers, which served as a means of buoyancy and propulsion. Colorful iridescent gem grade ammolite is found exclusively in southern Alberta, Canada, and only approximately 5% of this material really generates gemstone material, even though fossilized ammonites are found all over the globe.
The mineralized shell of an ammonite that has been subjected to high temperatures, mineralization, and tectonic pressure eventually becomes ammolite. You may find aragonite making up 97% of its composition, with iron making up 1% and silica making up 1%. The remaining 1% includes trace minerals including titanium, copper, chromium, magnesium, manganese, aluminum, barium, silicon, strontium, and vanadium.
Aragonite is the mineral that gives the stone its stunning, vibrant coloration. When light reflects off of the aragonite crystals, which may take the shape of thin scales or layers of varying thickness, the resulting rainbow of hues is reminiscent of gem grade ammolite.
The natural, two or three-faceted varieties of ammolite are available for purchase. At its base, a triplet is composed of a dark gray shale layer, while its topmost layer is capped with transparent optical quartzor synthetic spinel. Due to its exceptional fragility, ammonite is sometimes encased in two layers: one that provides protection and another that enhances the stone's vivid color flash. Typically, ammolite is offered for sale in a trio.
While untreated ammolite has a Mohs hardness of 3.5 to 4, making it very fragile and easily broken, triplets encased in transparent quartz or spinel raise the stone's hardness to 7 to 8.5, rendering it more suitable for jewelryapplications.
Color and brightness determine the four classes of ammolite that are available for purchase.
- AA - displays a trifecta of vivid, distinct hues.
- An A+ stone has two or three vivid hues.
- Shows two or more color variations.
- "Standard" means it has at least one color.
The Blackfoot people of North America are the original keepers of the folklore and healing properties associated with ammolite. For a long time after its discovery, the aboriginal Indians relied on ammolite as a protection from bad spirits.
Certain Feng Shui experts hold the belief that ammolite, by absorbing cosmic energy, bestows health, riches, and enlightenment to possessors. Those who visit or live in a house with this high-energy stone report feeling more balanced, energized, and well-rounded as a result. It is believed that ammonite with ammolite layers may improve the flow of Qi (life energy), radiate power, and transform negative energy into positive. People who do not believe in Feng Shui are claimed to nevertheless benefit from having ammolite around.
Ammolite, according to Feng Shui practitioners, absorbs all the wisdom of the cosmos and bestows its advantages on those who are lucky enough to be in its vicinity. The five elements—fire, earth, metal, water, and wood—are symbolized by the ammolite hues.