The bottom line is that Carnelian is a very pretty stone that is said to have a number of metaphysical and healing properties. Come and see the Carnelians that we have for sale at our Heart of Stone Studio. I’m sure you will be delighted.
Carnelian is a microcrystalline quartz, made up of silicon dioxide with iron oxide impurities that give it its distinct red color. It is in the chalcedony family of quartzes, with the quartz arranged in fibrous layers. This is different from the jaspers, where the quartz is arranged in sugar-like grains. The structure of the quartz in Carnelian gives some pieces a partial translucency.
The origin of the name Carnelian is not clear. Some people say that it comes from the Latin Carne, which means flesh. Others say that it comes from the Latin Corneus, which means horn. Still others suggest that it comes from the Latin Corneolus, which means cherry, because of its color.
The stone is found in a variety of places, including Brazil, Russia, Australia, Madagascar, South Africa, Uruguay, USA, UK, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Peru, Iceland, and Romania. The best Carnelian comes from India, where people put brownish stones out into the sun and the heat of the sun turns the brown colors red.
Carnelian has a long history of use by people. Its most exciting use--in jewelry--dates back nearly four thousand years: In Knossos on Crete, Carnelian was found in decorative pieces dating from the Bronze Age, although archeologists have found that this stone was worked by ancient jewelers as far back at the 4th or 5th millennium. In ancient Egypt Carnelian, and its more opaque version, called sard, were worn by master architects, and was also worn by warriors to give them courage. It was placed in Egyptian tombs as magic armor for life after death and was worn by living people to protect themselves from succumbing to hatred, anger, jealousy, and envy.
Egyptians set it in collars and necklaces with onyx and lapis lazuli, and Romans set it in gold for earrings or finger rings.
Because it is a hard stone (Mohs hardness of 7), it can be carved with images or symbols. Wax will not stick to Carnelian, so it was used for seals and signets in ancient times. Many Roman seals, and the stones in many Roman signet rings, are Carnelian.
Astrologically, Carnelian is associated with a number of signs. It is said to be particularly effective for Taurus, but is said to also promote zest for life in Aries, Gemini, and Virgo. Astrologists say that red carnelian can help Aries launch new projects, and it has an energetic, reassuring effect on Virgo and Cancer.
Some say that Carnelian has a number of metaphysical properties. It activates the first, second and third chakras, giving the wearer life force, sexual and creative energy. It is promoted as being good for people who want to make things happen. It can help people take the leap to a new path and helps overcome the fear of taking action.
Carnelian is said to be a good stone to wear for those who are afraid of public speaking, because it is supposed to give self-confidence and strengthens the voice. For this reason, it is a good stone to wear for people who are making theatrical presentations.
In a business context, Carnelian is said to support leadership, courage, and enterprise, and anchors people into the present reality. It is said to aid in decision making, and defines and strengthens a person’s identity.
Carnelian is also said to have a number of properties that are health-related. It is said to be effective for healing blood disorders and blocked arteries. It is said that it can be used to treat neuralgia, gall stones, kidney stones, pollen allergies, and colds, as well as disorders of the spine, spleen and pancreas, as well as also help heal cuts and abrasions. When Carnelian is placed on the solar plexus or navel, it is said that it will help with digestion and will also help with bile or liver problems.
To be effective from a metaphysical standpoint, experts say that Carnelian must be cleansed once a month under warm running water and recharged for a long period of time in the sun.
Cunningham: Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem & Metal Magic; Eason: The Illustrated Directory of Healing Crystals; Hall: Gemstones; Hall: The Encyclopedia of Crystals; Harding: Crystals; Megemont: The Metaphysical Book of Gems and Crystals; Mella: Stone Power; Melody: Love Is In the Earth; Moorey: Your Crystal Code; Parkinson: Gem Magic; Peschek-Bohmer & Schreiber: Healing Crystals and Gemstones; Simmons and Ahsian: The Book of Stones; Walker: The Book of Sacred Stones; Wikipedia: Carnelian