A family of gemstones consisting of bright green hiddenite, pink-lavender kunzite and the stones which are just called spodumene (yellow-green or colorless). All spodumenes are difficult to cut (too much cleavage in too many directions) and easy to break if worn carelessly, but the feature that can make up for this is their trichroic qualities -- three different shades of color can show when the cut stone is viewed at different angles.

The gem-quality spodumenes were not discovered until the late 1800s (though non-gem samples of the family had been known for millennia for their burnt gray color; hence the name "spodumene" derived from the Greek for "burned to ashes").

Spod"u*mene (?; 135), n. [Gr. , p. pr. pass. from to burn to ashes, from spodo`s ashes; cf. F. spodumene.] Min.

A mineral of a white to yellowish, purplish, or emerald-green color, occuring in prismatic crystals, often of great size. It is a silicate of aluminia and lithia. See Hiddenite.

 

© Webster 1913.

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