Larimar is a very smart stone. Nobody knows how many thousands of years it had managed to stay away from the prying eyes of humans, until, finally, in 1974 it got into the hands of a local master. The Dominican jeweller polished the rock and saw just what beauty had been hiding from humanity. Miguel Méndez named his discovery in part after his daughter Larisa and in part after the Spanish word for sea, after the colour of the gem. That is how the blue precious gem with white marks, which look so much like sea waves, got its name. This story about the discovery of larimar is slowly becoming a legend. What does science say about this mysterious gem?
The stone has a volcanic origin. Its colour varies from blue to green, however no green exemplars have been found: any larimar, even the closest to white, has a definite blue undertone. Larimar is only used in jewellery at present, as practical use for the gem has not been identified yet. Larimar deposits are mostly found in the Dominican Republic or Italy, not far from Venice. There is evidence of larimar having been found on the Bahamian islands, Canada, and Alaska, though the precious gem is mostly exported from the larger deposits.
The chemical formula of the compound is NaCa2Si3O8(OH). Glass has a similar formula, which explains the alike appearance of the natural mineral and manmade material. This is the reason why there are so many forgeries, many of which are quite convincing. Even though each larimar gem has a unique pattern, ‘professionals’ got the hang of creating believable designs, each a tiny bit different from the other.
What gem doesn’t have a legend?
It’s easy to believe that larimar has the property of reminding of legends. The famous mystic Edgar Cayce predicted that there will be traces of the Atlantis found on the Caribbean islands. The newfound gem of larimar was instantly branded as a piece of the mythical city, even if there was no logical connection between the lost civilisation and the igneous rock.
The interesting story about Miguel Méndez is not completely true either. The local people have known about the gems for more than a thousand years, while Western Europeans took notice of the stone only at the beginning of the 20th century. The honour of official mineral discovery could have belonged to a Catholic priest who was visiting the country in 1916. But the aesthetic properties of larimar were still unappreciated. The priest praised the stone in his writing, but never took any steps to register his discovery. 58 years later already mentioned Miguel Méndez took advantage of that and registered the rock himself, pinning the discovery on himself.
Colour and demand
Larimar is often called Haitian Turquoise for its beauty. In the professional industry it’s sometimes labelled as the ‘Atlantics stone’, though to avoid confusion, it’s always marketed as ‘larimar’. The appearance of the stone makes it look like a cloudy blue sky, or the sea, the waves washing away the clouds. Some larimar gems look very much alike to the light hitting the bottom of a deep sea, making strange patterns and designs. It’s possible to look at those patterns for a lifetime, no less, trying to decipher the pictures and details within.
While handling jewellery with larimar you should be very careful. The surface of the gem is prone to abrasive damage. Chemicals and chemically active substances should be kept away from the gem.
Magical properties of larimar
A human wouldn’t be a human if he stopped trying to use a natural stone for his own purposes. According to astrological research the magical properties of Larimar best suit the zodiac sing elements of water and air. That being said, Leo, a fire sign, can also count on protection from this precious gem.
Interesting decorations from larimar normalise the atmosphere in a house, smooth out tense relationships between generations, and make the house cosy and quiet. Meditation with the stone is easy, as the gem lets you concentrate on spiritual contemplation and distracts you from other problems and thoughts. Wearing jewellery with larimar is said to calm down the soul. It’s believed to have only positive effects on the body and be good for one’s mental state.
Young women looking for a good relationship wear larimar jewellery with hope. The stone is said to help only in case of good intentions and unconditional kindness from the potential partner. Larimar is a relatively new gem, hence hasn’t been used for long enough to judge its healing properties. However, it is a common belief that the blue colour stimulates the pumping of blood through the heart, as well as letting you breathe more freely.