We take a look into the history and myths behind lapis lazuli meaning; a stone that was worn only by royalty and forbidden to commoners in many ancient kingdoms.
What is lapis lazuli?
Prized for its intense colour, lapis lazuli is a deep blue semi-precious stone. As an aggregate of several minerals, commonly lazurite, calcite and pyrite, lapis lazuli properties mean the colour can range from greenish-blue to purplish-blue. However, the most popular and best quality variations are the intensely dark blue stones with patches of white calcite and flickering pyrite.
The lapis lazuli gemstone was thought of as very rare, until huge numbers were found in Badakhshan mines in Afghanistan, in the 1990s. There are lapis mines in the Chilean Andes set at an altitude of around 14,000 feet, which can only be used during the summer months due to their extreme weather conditions.
The stone was used by Egyptians for thousands of years, with examples of pendants and beads dating back to around 3100BC, as well as being used in Tutankhamun’s mask. As well as jewellery and adornment, lapis was made into powder and used as pigment and cosmetics due to its rich blue colour. Due to its history, cultures all over the world have built up varied beliefs and views on lapis lazuli meaning, so let’s explore a few of them.
Lapis lazuli meaning
Throughout history there have been a range of myths and opinions what the true lapis lazuli meaning is and what it can bring to the wearer. Due to its deep, celestial blue colour, lapis lazuli meaning has always been linked with gods, power, royalty, wealth, spirit and vision. It was treasured by ancient civilisations of Greece, Egypt, China and Greece, on the same level that they prized other blue gems like sapphire and turquoise.
In ancient times lapis lazuli meaning was thought to offer protection to the wearer from the evil eye, perhaps due to the stone’s similarity to the night sky, where God was believed to reside. In medieval Europe lapis lazuli was thought to be a defence against spirits of darkness and awaken the spirits of light and wisdom.
Today, lapis lazuli meaning is commonly linked with increasing awareness, intellect and insight. Many believe that by wearing the stone it will impart wisdom and knowledge onto them, and with it bringing them objectivity, peacefulness and self-acceptance.
You might not know...
It was used for the eyebrows, and other features, on the funeral mask of Tutankhamun.
Ancient civilisations' scholars believe that the link between man and lapis lazuli dates back over 6,500 years.